Putting Writing Second
I’ve been considering for a couple of days what would be the best option for a post on Christmas Eve. Here in the U.S., Christmas is one of the most celebrated Holidays we have. Celebrated from one side of the country to another, it’s a celebration where gifts are given, families gather together, people talk about the Birth of Christ, and odd (yet good) food is consumed—but what does this have to do with writers?
As almost a rule, we writers generally prefer our books over people. Whether we’re reading or writing, we would almost certainly rather do it than socialize, especially when Christmas no longer seems quite as magical or perfect as it used to. Most of us who consider ourselves to be writers love to write. It’s our passion. This set me to thinking about people, words, and extended family; then, eventually after a long and complicated train of thought, of something my pastor says every now and then:
“When people are dying, they don’t ask to see their diplomas or ledgers or certificates. They ask to see people.”
(Paraphrased, because I can’t remember his exact wording.)
Authors are a little more sentimental about their work than other people, but guessing from what I know of myself and other writers around me, we would be the same way. We wouldn’t want our books by our sides as we changed our spiritual address; we would want people. It’s the people who really matter. As writers, while we write for people, it’s easy to forget that the people here and now really are important.
You don’t usually see on a writing blog the advice to stop writing, but I think part of being an author is knowing when to pause.This Christmas, close your laptop. Put away your notebooks. I don’t care if you’re on a deadline unless it’s for midnight tonight — you’ll work it out somehow without writing for one day. Be around the people you love and who love you, and make an effort to be loving to those you may or may not want to be around. If you have to choose between writing and being around people, put writing after the people.
Merry Christmas, folks.
(For those of you concerned about me because I didn’t spend much time talking about the True meaning of Christmas, I have already seen eight blog posts today about it, as have most of you if you follow very many blogs, and we’ll both see more posted tomorrow. If you want to see some of them, just request it in the comments, and I’ll flood you with links.)