I haven't been posting new blogs, and I guess I'm sorry about that. Or maybe not. Clearly I'm not as guilt ridden as I should be. But here's the thing:
People who talk about writing aren't writing. Writing about writing isn't all that different.
I've spent my whole adult life among academics (which explains my growing intolerance for administrative bull shit and people who THINK they're smart), and NO ONE talks about writing more than academics. A few years ago, at the first departmental meeting of the year, we went around the table talking about how we spent our summer. One colleague spoke about a proposal for a book she'd finished. A proposal?!? Another said, with not one bit of shame, that she'd been working on an article. The same article she'd worked on the previous summer. Was she finished? NOPE! Two summers, thirty pages, not done. WTF? My writing partner and I had completed the first half of a 1 million word encyclopedia. 'Nuff said.
I have nightmares about a lot of things (the other night I dreamed a Rhino chased me through a field of Angus bulls) but more than anything I fear becoming like one of those people. I try not to talk about the writing too much. Sometimes I can't help myself, specially when I have a particularly good day or story idea, but mostly I try to keep my darn mouth shut. Also, talking about writing makes a person sound like a pretentious ass.
Maybe I worry that writing about writing is much the same. Maybe you worry about that too? If not writing, then some other thing you're good at? I wonder if women particularly suffer from this problem? Because we're schooled to be modest, to not brag, to make our lives about others . . . . Is it better to keep your mouth shut or is it better to brag about yourself? Where's the Ass Hole Line?
Here's what I know. It's important to believe in yourself and if talking about something you're god at helps you with that, then you should. But it's also important to shut up and DO. Shutting up includes both verbal noise, but all the electronic noise as well. If you're tweeting or snap chatting or blogging about writing (or anything else) you're NOT DOING IT.
So, got to go write today. My floor could be mopped, Cosco trip in order, car to be washed, but I'm going to write. My character is going in disguise to Confederate President Jefferson Davis's home to trick him into giving her a pass back to Washington. But until I write it it's not "real." So . . . . see you in Richmond at Jeff Davis's house!