Are Your Tastes Changing?

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My husband commented last week that he no longer had a craving for that first cup of coffee in the morning.

I said my taste had been changing, too. I used to consider myself a chocoholic, but I no longer craved chocolate.

Hmm.

Getting ready for a future yard sale, I found myself putting a lot of board games we loved to play in the past into the box. They’ve just lost their appeal.

Hmm.

Could the same thing happen with writing? Could it lose its attraction?

Hmm.

I asked a couple of writer-friends. 

At first they were aghast at the mere thought, but finally reasoned that if other things in life could lose their appeal, they guessed the same thing could happen with writing.

So, how will you know if this happens to you? And what, if anything, can be done about it?

First, the easy answer: you’ll know if it happens to you because you won’t be carrying your coffee into your home office each morning and rereading what you wrote the previous day—before anyone else in your household is even awake. 

You won’t spend endless hours perusing your lists of possible titles, character names, exciting verbs, and so on. And, you definitely won’t be shifting things around on your calendar to allow for more writing time.

The second question is harder to answer. You can give the “writer within” a boost by reading a book by an exciting author you’d like to emulate, you can reread your own work and take pride in your own style, read your positive reviews, or give yourself a vacation from writing for awhile—hoping that you’ve just burned the candle at both ends for far too long and need to revive your spirit.

Maybe try faking yourself out. Take all of your writing “stuff” and box it up. Put it on a high shelf and spend some time brainstorming what your future looks like without writing in it.

Take a nap.

Go for a walk.

Visit a friend.

Then, unpack that box. This is nonsense.

Once a writer, always a writer. 

There’s nothing on earth quite like it!

Are You Sure We Need to Write Every Day?

You may have heard that, as writers, we need to write every day—no matter what. I would agree with that, but I (who am not an expert by any means) would say that it really doesn’t matter what we write, as long as we stay in the habit of writing.

We may need to catch up on letter writing, blogging, answering emails, writing Thank You notes, and so on. Let’s not forget the occasional magazine article, Letter to the Editor, or skit for a club or church group.  These take time, of course, and use writing skills, too. So, they may be just as valuable in developing our writing abilities as in our writing that is devoted strictly to our “books.”

The point is, each of us hone our writing skills in different ways. The important thing is that we don’t get lazy and forget what we’re about. Writing is just like any other habit. If it isn’t cultivated, it dies on the vine.

I heard the saying, years ago, that the only way out of the forest is through (the trees). And, it follows that the only way to get a book written is to write!

So, let’s say you’re caught up on all the other kinds of writing in your life. It’s 2:00 in the afternoon. What should you do? Take a walk? Maybe. Eat a piece of left over birthday cake? If it’s chocolate. Call or text a friend and make plans for the weekend? Why not? But, now it’s 3:15. Should you take a nap?

May I suggest that you sit down in front of the computer and read the last few lines you wrote, yesterday? Then, write until exhaustion sets in.

When you have given it your all and you have no more to give, go ahead and go to bed, early. After all, you didn’t take that nap…

Brenda