IWSG 28 Time To Write

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This post was written for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group where we share our encouragement or insecurities on the first Wednesday of the month, to join the group or find out more click here.

 

“Lack of direction, not lack of time, is the problem. We all have twenty-four hour days.” from: Zig Ziglar

Self expression

It’s in our blood. We love to write, but how motivated are we to get the words down.

My priorities are clear in my mind. Family comes first for me, so I’ll put writing fiction aside if I’m needed.

Life snowballs on me. And because busy days often become stressful days, they bring with them a deep need to write. It’s not fiction though. It’s venting, letting loose, or whatever you call it that pushes me to the computer to let my fingers do the talking. I’ll spend several minutes spewing like a volcano just getting rid of the crap I’ve bitten back throughout the day.

My lifelong coping mechanism to save my loved one from my biting snarkasm is to write to vent.

Fiction as therapy

I’m probably sharing more than I should here but, here I go anyway. At one point my life crumbled around me. (Realistically I know I’m not the only one who has faced this, but at the time it seemed as if I were.) For the first time, my life was beyond my control. I couldn’t fight it, I couldn’t change it, and I had to adapt to it.

Not something I’ve ever done before; not something I wish to do again.

I turned to writing, but this time writing didn’t make me feel better. All the writing in the world didn’t change a thing. No amount of venting or logic got me back on my feet. I needed something else this round; eventually, I turned to fiction.

I needed to escape, and I found my answer within the Writers of the Future Contest.

Writing saved me once again.

I pantsed it. I always pants the shorts. The next ten glorious days I focused on this story which I eventually polished and sent in. (Never won, but that’s no surprise.) It gave the time I needed to adapt to my circumstances. It let me glance up from the computer and cope one inch at a time until I was able to face my new life head on.

Finding Time?

I don’t have to find time. It finds me. What motivates you to write?

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122 responses to “IWSG 28 Time To Write

  1. Wonderful post. Writing has saved me many a time too. I can’t imagine ever not writing.

  2. Great post. I’m working to write to save me. I am in that latter situation you faced. I’m still working through. Writing helps. I’m not sure I have accepted it yet, but I do cope better at least today, lol. I have a tendency to turn to reading to escape but I am a voracious reader even in great times. Book have been my solace and friends even in childhood. I could and can disappear for days in books if I have enough book to feed my reading habit. I don’t do that hardly ever anymore because its better to deal than to hide.

    Juneta @ Writer’s Gambit

  3. This post was a big ‘ping’ in my brain. Fiction as stress-reliever–I get it. Imagine a world where things work the way you want them to (or at least you can fix them… or understand them… or–you know what I mean). I get it.

  4. Great post! Writing has always been my stress reliever as well as my best form of communication and at this point, it’s compulsive. I have to write or else I get extra anxious. I suppose writing takes my anxiety down a notch.

  5. I write because the stories won’t stop telling themselves in my head. πŸ™‚ It is also a great stress reliever. I love bleeding anxiety out onto the page and out of my body.

  6. Writing has always been therapy for me. Whether I’m writing something that is personal or just writing, it helps.

  7. My first published book came about when I was intensely miserable at my workplace. My writing was a life raft for me out of a toxic atmosphere.

  8. I just have to do it. It keeps me sane, and it makes me happy. I love working on a brand new story–there’s nothing like it.

  9. Angela Wooldridge

    Great post Anna, I often write to vent too – how far your pen digs into the paper can be an indication of how strongly you feel πŸ˜‰

  10. Hi,
    I love your quote by Zig Ziglar. I have read his book.
    I don’t wait on the time to find me. If I don’t write at my appointed time, I am miserable. So, I keep my appointment with myself and I write.
    All the best.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Pat Garcia

  11. I think it’s great that you shared that part of your life when it was crumbling and how writing saved you. That’s the kind of thing that helps folks realize they’re not alone.

  12. Writing is definitely an escape for me. I can create worlds aplenty in my head, and turning them into a story is a way to make them feel more real to me.

  13. Writing is wonderful therapy. I don’t know how I would have gotten through most of my life without it. Trying to imagine a life without writing as part of it…I just can’t picture it!

  14. Writing is my escape mechanism. When I’m writing, everything falls away and I can breathe and regroup. Life would be impossible without writing.
    By the way, your idea is a big hit.
    IWSG Co-host at http://lorilmaclaughlin.com

  15. Writing really can be a lifesaver. And I love that Zig Ziglar quote. πŸ™‚

  16. Family and life often get in the way of writing. As they should. πŸ™‚

    Writing has definitely been my therapy many, MANY times. I’ve used moments from my own life in my stories. Particularly the difficult times.

  17. Oh this post!! I understand the feeling. I’ve been down that road and, no thank you, I don’t want to follow it again! This summer I stopped writing and I returned to a path I thought I’d never been down before. It was overgrown and thorny. I’ve let it dictate my writing. I’m letting it draw me in and I write when the path parts and I’m able to take a few steps. I have no concrete idea where this story is going. It’s scary because I’ve always thought I was a plotster and here I am, letting an unknown story drag me through the woods. What does that say about what kind of girl I am? πŸ˜‰ Thanks for that wonderful quote! It’s so, so true! Cheers!

  18. So glad you had your gift of writing and escaping into the words to help you through the difficult times. When I was going through my divorce my brother said, “You have your faith, your family, and your writing to get you through this.” He was right. I also had my music. I can always play piano, no matter what my mood.

  19. Generally, I write because I love it.

    Lately, though, I’ve been struggling to find motivation because my life is currently in that “falling appart” phase.

  20. *apart

    Don’t you hate spotting a typo right after you’ve hit publish?

  21. What motivates me most is seeing people busier than me who publish multiple books a year. They have goals and deadlines and get the work done. I still take time for myself, but I work a lot on my writing so I can get to that place too!

    Here’s my September IWSG post – my secret tool for finding writing time

  22. I loved reading how you used your writing to put your life back into order. That was a brilliant way to deal with overwhelming issues.

  23. authorcrystalcollier

    Writing is therapy! I need lots of it. Years and years worth. πŸ˜‰

  24. After I dropped out of University (was forced to go so not sorry I got out of that depressing situation), I had a very depressing time in my life and wrote lots of fan fiction in between other writing. Trust me, writing is a savior to all kinds of people and glad it was a savior to you. Plus some of my fiction back then makes my eyebrows fly back in my bed. Damn I’m a mean author. But then again….:) aren’t we supposed to torture our characters even if technically some belong to a nicer cartoon franchise? :p

  25. Glad writing was able to save you and help you on the road to getting your life back together.

    Family is always first for me as well and with 3 active boys at home, they always need something. I don’t write to cope, or vent, I usually call my sister for that because she’s used to it. LOL I do write for fun, it’s my escape. If I happen to entertain people along the way, well that’s a bonus. πŸ™‚

  26. “I don’t have to find time. It finds me.” I love that !!! πŸ™‚
    Writing has been my therapy, too. Writing and photography, so unfortunately I joggle the two, but my own sanity depends on both. πŸ˜‰

  27. Writing to vent has helped very well for me too, but I usually do it in the form of an email to my best friend and in notes for future reference, if needed, like if I want to get back to those emotions when writing my memoir, or even using pieces of those notes. I have written a diary for over 25 years now and I feel like that takes care of my daily writing needs. I also write blogs about three times a week. No wonder I don’t feel like writing on my memoir. The only thing that motivates me to write in that situation, is lack of anything better or more important to do… Or, the rare genius idea. πŸ™‚

  28. Writing is DEFINITELY my therapy as well. I’m always amazed how I can believe I’m just writing fiction (making things up), then at the end be able to see that I was working out my angst about something in particular. I’m glad to hear that writing still saves your life when you need it, too.

  29. It’s interesting when you say that “it finds me.” I’ve had moments like that. I’ve also spent time creating writing habits and word count logs, but then . . .. a few days ago, I sat down and wrote 10,000 words in one day. I didn’t plan on that or create a habit for it. I just did it. Thankfully, my family had other things going on that didn’t need me to jump in and help, but it was still surprising. The writing found me that day, when on other days, I have to stalk it.

  30. I can always tell when I’m not writing enough. It’s vital to my equilibrium. For me, I realized the time was already there. I just had to take advantage of it.

  31. Fantastic post. Yes, writing is a sort of therapy, at least for us – writers. I often channel my negativity through writing; some of my best stories have come from it.

  32. I’m sorry you went through tough times, but I’m very glad that writing saved you. Life sometimes seems to have its own plan for us, and nothing we can do will change it no matter how hard we struggle or think we can control everything. Roll with the punches, adapt, see the silver linings in things (coz they’re there!). Have a great week!

  33. “I don’t have to find time. It finds me.” I love your perspective!
    …and I must add that Zig Ziglar makes a good point…
    Happy IWSG Day! πŸ™‚

  34. My reasons for writing seem to stay as constant as the wind. Never the same from day to day, or at least year to year. First I wrote because I kept a journal. Then I wanted to be published. Now, I just want to tell my stories because I love getting to live in someone else’s world. http://www.lisabuiecollard.com

  35. Oh yeah, the crumbling crap sure piles on the crumbs and buries you in them at times. But writing sure can help save the day.

  36. Writing can be a great form of self-therapy … but only if we are honest with the reader and with ourselves. May life never completely crumble on you again, Roland

  37. I agree with the others, this is a wonderful post. I began writing when I lost my dad. I understand how you feel perfectly. Writing is our refuse, our crutch, our lifesavior, or whatever else you want to call it. I think we’re fortunate to be writers. Happy IWSG Wednesday, Anna. Thanks for supporting my blog. Means a lot. .

  38. I’m glad you found this outlet. I used to write poetry when my emotions were in the pressure cooker.

  39. It’s great you can turn to writing when you need an escape. I’ll do that too, when I need to get away from the stresses of the day.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog. πŸ™‚

  40. I often joke that I’ll be reaching for my journal and pen on my deathbed with one last thought. Writing saved my life and continues to do so.

  41. ‘My priorities are clear in my mind. Family comes first for me, so I’ll put writing fiction aside if I’m needed.’ That’s me. But these days I’m getting better at finding more writing time. I feel selfish, but if I’m ever going to finish my novels, I’ve got to do it. Yes, writing can save us. Great therapy. My characters make me laugh and cry.

    Have a great writing month!

    Denise πŸ™‚

  42. Writing can be very therapeutic, eh? Snarkasm? Love that!

  43. Congratulations on the move! Great inspirational response and you’re right many of us have been there. Thank God for fiction!
    Happy or angst driven writing – it’s all good!

  44. “It finds me” – I LOVE that.

    Fiction is the best therapy there is. I started writing at a stressful time in my life. Instead of lying in bed up all night worrying about people being mad at me, I fell asleep peacefully dreaming of what my characters would do next.

  45. Writing has always been an escape for me. Long before I wrote fiction, I journaled. I still consider journaling as therapy, only less expensive. πŸ™‚

    Your offhand comment that you always pants your shorts fascinated me. Shorts are the only thing I ever plot. I love that we all have different ways to create!

    Writing contests are fabulous. Just make sure they’re legit before you enter, and go for it.

    VR Barkowski

  46. Awesome post! I always feel better after I write, maybe because I feel I created something. Like I fulfilled a purpose. Writing is incredibly cathartic, so you have to make time to heal yourself.

  47. “I don’t have to find time. It finds me.” I serious love that. And it’s awesome you found some reprieve in writing the story. Escapism is why I read and write.

  48. Writing to control times of chaos – so true. The win, such as it is, is surviving. Motivation – that’s a strange thing. It’s an inner demon – insisting that words get written, then criticizing the end product.

  49. Write is my escape. we all write for different reasons. Great post.
    Tweeted.

  50. Writing is therapy. Great post.

  51. Oh yeah. Writing is an escape, a healer and an extension of who I am. Thanks for the visit.

    Teresa

    From Journaling Woman

  52. Writing has been therapy for me since I was young. It’s how I started writing poetry. I still write as therapy but also for entertainment simply because I enjoy it. On the plus side, I show my children what it means to go after your dreams.

  53. Sandra Ulbrich Almazan

    I’m hypothyroid, so I have to take medicine every day to keep my metabolism running at the proper level. I think of writing as medicine for my soul. If I don’t do it, I fall out of psychological/spiritual balance.

  54. I have always found writing to be the best therapy. My first book published was written sitting in hospitals when my brother had cancer. When life gets too ugly, it’s much more fun to escape to a fictional world.

  55. I love your thought/sentiment that you don’t have to find time to write that it finds you. I agree with you. Writing tugs at our heart strings pulling us away from distractions. Writing is my favourite therapy, it makes me feel good.

  56. Writing has saved me, too. It’s cathartic to vent on paper (or the screen). I’ll shred the paper or delete the file, so no one finds it and is hurt. But it helps tremendously.

  57. For me, writing is a daily requirement for continued sanity. Some people need to go for a run every day to feel normal. I need to spend some time with my characters.
    Great post.

  58. mlouisebarbourfundyblue

    I enjoyed your post, Anna. I’ve periodically done intense journal writing over the years. I swear at times it’s kept me sane! Although, I’m sometimes embarrassed when I go back and read the venting! What motivates me to write are my characters whose voices fill my head and heart. Have a good one!

  59. Writing certainly saved me once…. I need it to again. Life is always a whirlwind and changing and not always for the better. Now I am going on to another route and journey, and who know where that will lead.

    I have new anthologies I’d like to submit a story to, but now I need to just jump in with both feet, since I do have the time now…. Here’s to hoping the words will come.

    Have a great weekend!

  60. I’m like you in that I often write to vent and the rediscovery of writing fiction helped me through a dark period in my life. Like you, I also tend to put writing aside for family, but now that my family knows how important my writing is, I find I try to write while attending to family needs. Thanks for sharing this part of you.

  61. For me, family comes first too. I’m glad that you have found an escape in writing.

  62. jennifer@badbirdreads

    Thanks for sharing. Fiction really is like therapy.

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