When I started [Infinite Jest] the only idea I had is I wanted to do something about America that was sad but wasn’t just making fun of America. Most of my friends are extremely bright, privileged, well-educated Americans who are sad on some level, and it has something, I think, to do with loneliness. I’m talking out of my ear a little bit, this is just my opinion, but I think somehow the culture has taught us or we’ve allowed the culture to teach us that the point of living is to get as much as you can and experience as much pleasure as you can, and that the implicit promise is that will make you happy. I know that’s almost offensively simplistic, but the effects of it aren’t simplistic at all. I don’t have children but I’m sort of obsessed with the idea of what my children will think of me, of what we’ve done with what we’ve been given, and why we are so sad.
Wal-Mart earned $27 billion in profit last year. They could afford to pay their bottom million workers $10,000 more a year, raise all of those people out of poverty, cost — save taxpayers billions of dollars, and still earn $17 billion in profit, right? It’s simply nuts that we have allowed this to happen. […] You know, this ridiculous idea that a worker on Wall Street who earns tens of millions of dollars a year securitizing imaginary assets or doing high-frequency trading is worth 1,000 times as much as workers who earn tens of thousands of dollars a year educating our children, growing or serving us our food, throwing themselves into harm’s away to protect our life or property, that this difference reflects the true value or intrinsic worth of these jobs is nonsense.
From Chuck Wendig’s blog: a hilarious and oh-so-true list of what to NEVER say to a writer.
“You Know, I Wanna Write A Book Someday.”
"Gosh, I wish I had time to write."
"Hey! You can write my idea."
"You should write my life story."
Are you a writer? Read his post to see the appropriate response (click on the title of this post & it will magically take you there).
I stuck with the three posts per week schedule for the month of August and it went well. I was able to post on schedule for the most part. Even so, it’s plain to see I will not be able to continue this amount of content. First of all, it detracts from me writing anything else, which is a problem. I have also begun classes in graduate school which will take more and more of my time as the semester goes on. Work has also begun so I’m back at the k-8 school, helping teach those darn kids.
Three posts a week just isn’t feasible. I’m going to try for two posts a week, one in the first half, sun-wed, one in the second half, wed-sat. I’m giving a range of days because I will honestly be scrounging for blog-writing time whenever I can get it. That’s just the way it is. The plan will be one post on writing, one post of fiction. I know I need to finish Scrap, I also need to get back to my short story, and other ideas that keep jumping up on me.
That’s what’s been happening. Thanks for listening and dealing with the irregularity recently.
I just feel the need to share that sentiment at the moment.
"If you don’t want nude pics leaked, don’t take nude pics with your phone —" *Tasers you* *steals your shoes* SHOULDN’T WEAR SHOES BRO— Chuck Wendig (@ChuckWendig)September 1, 2014
You can only do so much. You can plan and strategize and monopolize the free time you get. You can grab bits and chunks of writing time here and there in spare spontaneous moments. You can establish a daily writing habit and continue it for days, weeks, months, years. You can write hundreds of blog posts ahead of time and schedule them to go up at the right time.
And still, real life will get in the way. You will fall behind. It happens. Shit happens. You have to deal with it. If real life rears its big ugly head, thats okay. Let it. Do what you have to do, try to forget the nagging sensation of ‘Oh I need to be writing’ and try to enjoy the bumps and situations real life throws your way.
I don’t mean it as something bad will happen, though it will. Bad things do happen, but that’s not always what will get in the way of writing. Just as often, it will be good things, going on vacation, spending time with friends or loved ones, etc. As said before, have fun while it lasts, then, as soon as you can, get back on your horse and write like hell.
If it is Something Bad, then you need to deal with it, writing can take a backseat. Do what you need to in your real life before you delve into your imaginary one.
Basically, I’m writing this post as a poor excuse for not getting in my monday blog post on time. Real life got in the way, in a good way. Sometimes it’s best to just let it. Get back in the saddle when you can.
I recently created a “writing room” in my apartment. I set up a six-foot cheap foldable table and put a spare chair in the spare room that is mostly used for storage. It’s not much, the walls bare, most of the space taken by beer-brewing equipment, cardboard boxes and christmas ornaments, but it’s something. I’ve only used it a few times but it’s useful. Having a space devoted to writing makes me write more. I think it’s important for a writer to have a space devoted to writing. You have your job space, your sleeping space, your living space, dining, etc. You should have a space for writing if it’s truly important to you.
Now, this could be anything. It could be an office or study, or it could be simply sitting up in your bed with your laptop in your lap. It’s simply a space where, for a time, all you do is write in that space. It could be at your dining table, in your living room with the television off. It could be outside under a tree at the park, or in a lovely cafe while sipping an iced latte. It could be multiple spaces. The point is, it’s a place where you go to do one thing and one thing only for a certain amount of time. A place to focus on writing, troubles left behind, distractions gone.
Having a specific place helps you write more. It will aid you in sustaining a good writing habit, especially if you get into a routine with it. Maybe an hour before work every day, you go into your writing space and write for an hour. It’s just a place where you can go and get work done, leaving other things, ideas, distractions, problems, at the proverbial door. I like my little storage room because when I go in, with a fresh glass of water or coffee or beer(depending on the time of day…usually), I know what I’m getting into. I’m not going to waste time on games of tv. I’m going in there to write goddamnit.
Roald Dahl had a tiny hut. Neil Gaiman has a freaking writing gazebo! What do you have? It could be anything.