Happy November! It's the month of gratitude. Each Thursday this month, I'll tell you one thing that is fantastic and wonderful about the writing life that I'm grateful for.
Notice that I didn't say the professional writer life. Because that's an entirely different animal. The writing life is that experience--whether it's once a week, every day for 10 minutes, or your real-life, 9-to-5 job--that you have while writing. Publication is optional.
Today: I'm grateful for the writing life because
That's right. The rest of the year, we can moan and groan about the agonies of writing, sitting over our typewriters and opening our veins, or banging our heads on desktops, the self-doubt, the isolation, whatever.
But at the end of the day, it IS fun.
Writers get to play, just like when we were kids, except we get to play forever. We get to close the door on the realities of our small lives and soar into wide-open vistas full of anything we want. Our imaginations allow us to create our own fun. We can time-travel to a 13th-century Russian monastery or a 25th-century Mars colony. We can fall in love or comfort children or fight Nazis. We can even save the universe using a kettle and some string.
I wake up every day wondering, What will I make today? A sad world? A happy moment? Will I scare people, enrich people, disgust people? Or just pour sand through a dumptruck in my own private sandbox?
The choices are ours. And they're marvelous. Be grateful that you get to do this, even for a few minutes at a time. Because frankly, if we were in it for the money or the fame, most of us--um, 98 percent of us, maybe?--wouldn't be doing it at all.
video clip is from Time Crash, that fabulous mini-episode of Doctor Who written by one of the most fun-loving writers I know--Steven Moffatt-- and starring David Tennant as Doctor #10 and Peter Davison as Doctor #5. Thanks to kaitlinmj for the video. Watch the full episode here (about 8 minutes long).