Monday, July 16, 2012

Reflections on Time Spent Writing


I’ve spent thousands of hours writing, perhaps even tens of thousands of hours, and the very magnitude of that number made me pause to consider how I might otherwise have spent that time. My house might be less dusty, though I should emphasize “might” since I dislike housecleaning and avoid it as much as is possible. I would definitely have read more books, many, many more books, and my garden would be much larger. What else? Ah yes, I would have attended more classes.

Despite working full-time I used to study all sorts of things: I learned how to ride a motorcycle, throw and fire clay pottery, public speaking, knitting, rock-climbing, and mountaineering. I climbed two dozen Fourteeners, some dangerous, some not. In the midst of all of that I also decided to write a novel, high-fantasy no less. I completed that first draft oh so many years ago, and back to Lifelong Learning I went to learn how to get published.

How to get published? Now there’s a challenge! Semi-annual writers conferences soon usurped Lifelong Learning classes and critique meetings adorned my calendar. Writing, writing, writing and new, cherished friends. So the years passed.

Would I have met my sisters and brothers of the quill without penning that first manuscript and attending that class? The odds are poor and quite sad to contemplate. What about those books with my name on the spine? They would not exist. Also sad to contemplate.

All those hours of anguish and hope, of deliberation and delight.  All those words. All those worlds. Time well spent, don’t you think?

by Janet Fogg
Janet Fogg is the author of Soliloquy, an award-winning historical romance, and co-author of the military history bestseller, Fogg in the Cockpit.

A previous version of Reflections on Time Spent Writing first appeared on the Sisters of the Quill blog.

2 comments:

Patricia Stoltey said...

I definitely think it's time well spent. Gardening, taking classes, and other hobbies/avocations are great, but nothing beats writing a book and getting it published. And oh the friends we make along the way...

fpdorchak said...

It's ALL good, Janet! Of course it is! :-]

"Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans." John Lennon.