I am a writer privileged enough to have time to write. Many writers must work a full time job (or two) in addition to raising a family. But since I stay at home with my kids, several times a day, in about 5-10 minute intervals, I am writing.
I have never needed motivation to sit down and actually write. I often write when I should be sleeping. I write when I should be cooking dinner. I write instead of doing laundry or breaking up fights between my children. I write when I should be paying attention to my spouse.
But these are areas I DO need to work on: 1. I’m not good enough at it. And I find it difficult to fit in classes or workshops to make myself a better writer. 2. I write a ton, but finish only about 5% of the pieces I start writing. 3. Once I finish and revise a piece, I rarely take the time necessary to actually research publications and send them off.
And here’s where accountability comes in. If I tell people I’m a writer, and call myself a writer, I’m going to feel pressured to follow through on my writing. Recently, a friend emailed me and asked me how the writing was going. It immediately made me think, “Gotta finish that piece.” Another day, someone else asked, “So what are you working on?” I found myself embarrassed that I hadn’t worked on anything for a while, so later that day I started another piece. If someone asks, “Where have you been published?” and I can’t remember where because it’s been a year since I’ve been published, I then get on the internet and start researching markets again. Being accountable has pushed me to finish what I start. And because of this, I tell anyone who will listen that I’m a writer.
How do you make yourself accountable to your craft?
Next week, I’ll write a post on my writing process. And I’d love it if those of you artists out there could share what your process is. Because my writing process needs an overhaul, I think.