Discipline and Writing

By Lynda Lee Schab

Writing lately has been challenging for me. I take that back. Writing has been virtually non-existent for me. . As I was mulling this over, I had an epiphany. Wanna hear it?

My book won’t write itself.

Deep, I know.

A while back, I saw a reporter interviewing Anne Hathaway on some entertainment TV show. Apparently, Anne had just lost about 15 pounds for a movie role. I know, right? The girl doesn’t have an extra 15 pounds to lose. But that’s not my point.

The reporter asked this question: “Wasn’t it hard to be on such a strict diet?”

Anne’s reply sticks with me:

“It doesn’t matter how hard it was. It’s what was required.”

Wow. Talk about a great answer. Rather than focus on the difficulty of sticking to such a regimented diet, and how she missed out on the fattening foods she loves, poor me…wah…wah…wah… Anne simply bucked up and did what she had to do. Okay, so she had a (few) million reasons to stick to that diet. I’m thinking if I was making millions of dollars on a book, I’d be more inclined to sit my buns in a chair and do what’s required, too.

But that’s beside the point.

The point is, just as acting is Anne’s passion, writing is mine. And if I want to see another book on the shelf, then it doesn’t matter how hard it is. I need to do what’s required to make it happen. Even if it means getting up early. Even if it means giving up something I love (*cough–Solitaire Blitz–cough*). Even if it means keeping my butt glued to my chair until my daily word-count goal is reached.

Of course, adopting that attitude is easier said than done. It begins (and ends, really) in the mind. It’s taking authority over my feelings when I don’t “feel” like writing. It’s telling myself (again and again, if necessary) during the difficult…boring…frustrating…moments, that “this too shall pass.” It’s constantly reminding myself that the fruits of my labor will all be worth it in the end. Even though my “fruits” will be grapes, compared to Anne’s watermelons.

Stop chuckling. You know what I mean.

Question for you: Is discipline something you struggle with? Any tips or recent epiphanies you’d like to share?

“For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.” –  Hebrews 12:11

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lyndaschabLYNDA LEE SCHAB got her writing start in greeting cards and has many articles and stories published in magazines and online publications. She is also a regular book reviewer for FaithfulReader.com, but Lynda’s passion has always been fiction. Her novels, MIND OVER MADI and MADILY IN LOVE, are available in print and on Kindle. Lynda lives in Michigan with her two children. Learn more about Lynda on her website, www.LyndaSchab.com.

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