Friday, January 1, 2010

The Hardest Thing

My first "freelance writing" teacher, a novelist, said: "The hardest thing about writing is placing your butt in the chair." Age 18 then, I'd never heard that and didn't understand.

Sitting down and writing -- to express myself, be somebody on paper -- that was an indulgence, a privilege; fun, and not a pain; sort of a bubble bath for the mind! I did it as often as I could.

Over the years I heard "how hard it was" repeated by teachers and then by fellow writers, until I accepted it. My first artificial difficulty! And I let it govern me, this First-World, fey statement of the grossly overprivileged: "The hardest thing about writing is sitting down to it." Much worse, I repeated this false "truism" to others, who should have jeered me! Who should have said, "Oh, really big life-threatening problem, that one!"


  1. I think that a writer who says that is the hardest thing is not really a writer at all. How could they struggle with joy and being possessed by their work? It's what I live for.

    The hardest thing about being a writer is making a living at what you love. That's my opinion.