Writing Process


I type like the wind.

Stephen King has repeated said he writes every day. I saw him when he was in Albuquerque being interviewed on stage by George R.R. Martin. Martin, at one point in the interview asked, “How do you write so fast?” Or words to that effect. I seem to remember him asking “How do you write so fucking fast?”, but that may just be my unrequited love affair with the word ‘fuck’. Either way it was asked, King’s response was “I write six good pages a day. Every day.” Again, words to that effect. I don’t seem to remember King saying, “I write six good fucking pages a day”, but he might have.

At any rate, this was not new information. I think everyone knows Stephen King writes every day. He’s been forward about that for years. After all, it’s his job and you don’t blow off work just because you don’t feel like doing it. On the other hand, George R.R. Martin is famous for taking years to knock out a new novel. In Martin’s defense, let’s face it, A Song of Fire and Ice is some crazy complicated shit and each scene has to work with every other scene that has come before it. So, it’s not entirely surprising that the TV series will likely end before the book series.

So, what does all this have to do with the price of tea in China? I’m of the opinion that writing every day is a good thing. It could be a couple lines, it could be a few hundred, but I write something every day almost without fail. For me, it’s just become something I do out of habit and I feel bad if I don’t do it. Writing is my way of unwinding and I feel a bit lost if I don’t get some in every night.

House is on fire, but I’m almost done with this chapter.

But that’s not necessarily for everyone. A couple days ago I came across a Twitter thread about exactly that thing. The general gist of the thread was that feeling like you have to write every day is bullshit. Life, it seems, oftentimes has other plans for our free time. Be it work, play, or a new Star Wars movie coming out, sometimes you simply can’t find time every day to put words on pages.

Besides, as I’ve repeatedly said, I didn’t start writing to follow everyone else’s rules. The world is already full of people following everyone else’s rules. My rule is trying my damnedest to write something every day, but it’s not for everyone. Rules are for suckers, anyway. Make your own rules.

At the beginning of the year, I wrote a post about the magic of writing. Now that the year is coming to a close, I’d like to reiterate what I wrote then: If there’s something you love to do, find time to do it. It doesn’t matter how far you go. It doesn’t matter how fast you go. It matters that you go.

So, get out there and go.

What about you? Got any thoughts on writing every day? Drop ’em in the comments; I love comments and am usually fairly good at replying to them.

And now, your moment of Zen.



7 thoughts on “Writing Process

  1. I’m not a writer, in fact I’m terrible with words, but I’ve been trying to paint or draw a little bit every night. And it has become the best way for me to unwind and release stress. Sometimes I’m in the studio for hours straight painting and drinking, and sometimes I’m in there for 15 minutes just staring at what I worked on the previous night. So I guess even when I’m not painting, I at lease spend some time every night looking at my paintings, hanging out with them. I have multiple paintings in progress, none are finished. But I don’t really care too much about cranking out masterpieces to sell and get famous, I paint for a while then I primer the canvas and paint something new over and over until the surface gets so thick with gesso and paint that it starts cracking and can’t be used.
    There are days where I can’t get into the studio at all, like when traveling, but the sketchbook is always with me.
    I never felt like I had to paint every day to be considered an artist, I just do it to stay sane (or as close to sane as I can be)

  2. If I could, I would write every day, but job, kids, husband, pets, life complicate that. Still I manage most days to write and when I’m immersed in witting a novel I write everyday even if I only get ten good minutes in. I feel as though this propulsion happens as a result and it’s exhilarating

  3. I always feel best—like myself—when I’m doing something I love each day. Writing, for me, is always in smaller chunks (being a blog writer), but I do feel like things flow better when I’m writing more regularly. I sing as part of my day-job living, so practicing my stuff in the car, or sitting down at a keyboard to practice synth stuff is relaxing to me and not at all like work, and yet it helps my work to flow better.

    Last year, I wrote a few sentences every night in a doc that I gave my hubby as a surprise on New Year’s Day. It reminded me that our life together isn’t perfect but it’s pretty damn good, even when the day has been a struggle. It was a good exercise for me each night before bed, partly because it made me reflect on what was good about a particular day, but also good as a habit of writing while events were fresh. The writing flowed because it was daily and planned.

    I would be rude if I didn’t thank you for including the IT Crowd clip of Maurice typing away while things are on fire. That was one of my favorite scenes in a show of all kinds of favorites!

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