Thursday, April 9, 2015

Writer's Guilt

Since I took up writing again, I am often plagued by guilt. Guilt for choosing to spend any free time I can scrounge following a dream I have had since I was a child. My writing isn't making a financial contribution to my family (yet) so with everything else that needs my attention sometimes I wonder if I should keep pursuing it.

Anyone with children knows that they take up a lot of time. My youngest is finally four-years-old, the magic age of independence, where she can play for extended periods of time alone. This frees me up to get other things done. Our house is not spotless, so why should I take time to write when floors need swept, laundry needs put away, and other chores await? I think of this every time I sit down to edit a few pages or even write a blog (which is probably why I'm often late on posts).

When my children go to bed it's the only alone time my husband and I get. There I am, pulling out my computer and putting on my headphones to write. I've never been a big television person so I don't feel like I'm missing out there, but I feel bad for not spending more time with my husband.

The guilt piles when you think of friends that get neglected and other things that start to slide. Then the inner critic starts, making me question my abilities and if I can actually get my work published. Some days it can be crippling. 

Writing a novel takes time, more than people who don't write know. Hours of writing, revising and editing, over and over. Then spending time researching agents and sending out queries. It's almost a full time job by itself but few people are actually able to make it work that way.

So why go on?

Because I love to write, first and foremost. Followed by, if I don't do this, I will always wonder if I could have. As I get older, I'm realizing that I shouldn't wait because time really does fly by.

How do you deal with writer's guilt?

3 comments:

  1. I don't feel guilty. But then I'm a divorced pensioner with few family responsibilities. If I was in your shoes I might want to think about some minor adjustments to my writing schedule to relieve the feeling of guilt.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for your comment. It's not all the time and I've started trying to take a night off every week to watch tv with my husband.
      Happy writing!

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    2. Thanks for your comment. It's not all the time and I've started trying to take a night off every week to watch tv with my husband.
      Happy writing!

      Delete