August 4, 2014

No Excuse Writing

By Diane Bator

Excuses, excuses...

I've been a writer since I was a kid. By kid, I mean big enough to hold a crayon and make squiggles that passed for...well, nothing to most eyes, but fabulous words to me. Over the years, I've carved out my own writing time between work, family, and other obligations. While I could use life as an excuse not to write, I chose to make writing a priority. I write while waiting for appointments, for kids at karate and soccer, for dinner to cook, and at writing group meetings. There are no excuses when ten other writers are waiting for you to read your latest fifteen minute blurb based on prompts that are supposed to motivate, yet sometimes do intimidate. . 

Yes, it's hard to write a book. Yes, it's hard to get an agent or a publisher to read your work. Yes, it can be even harder to get your family on board while you slave over a hot keyboard. But you will never get the story that's buried in your head into a book you can hold in your hands if you make excuses and don't plant your butt in a chair to write.

"But I don't have an office. Can't write without an office." -- for the record, I write on my couch, at my kitchen table, in coffee shops, on my back deck. No office.

"But I had a great idea, but Stephen King stole it." -- There are a zillion books out there about zombies and vampires. Many books share a concept; only one book will contain your words, your descriptions, and your passion.

"But I hate using computers, they hate me." (Yes, I have heard this one!) -- These days, the Internet is the best way to contact and keep in touch with agents, publishers, writing groups, and so on. Learning new things is part of keeping young and networking. The Internet is also a great source of research material.

"But my family thinks I'm crazy." -- I think I'm crazy, but that's never stopped me. Book number three has just been published and I have many more on the way! It's all about following your passion.

"I have a great book, movie script, and a related theme park, but have so far received rejection after rejection." -- Every great writer has received at least one rejection. If you keep receiving rejections and can't figure out why, recruit people you know will give you an honest critique. Mom doesn't count unless she's a professional editor, sorry. Many times the biggest mistake new writers make is not having someone help with a good edit, you don' want to give publishers/editors migraines.

Stop making excuses. Everyone can find ten or fifteen minutes in their day to put words to paper and every book is created exactly the same way:  one word at a time.
Diane Bator has been a writer since she was able to hold a pencil and tell a story. An avid hiker, Reiki Master, and martial artist, she loves to make a mess in the kitchen and putters in the garden at will. Joining the Headwaters Writers' Group in 2007 was the catalyst for her unearthing several old writing projects. Her first murder mystery, Murder on Manitou, was published after winning a writing contest in 2010. Since obtaining her agent, Dawn Dowdle, she has gone on to write the Wild Blue Mysteries series, published by Books We Love, and has another mystery series on the way. She lives in Southern Ontario, Canada with her husband, three kids, and a cat who thinks he's a Husky.

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