Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Dedication, Discipline, Devotion

A while back Writers Unboxed had a post that got me thinking (most of their posts are wonderful!). The author, Robin LaFevers, suggests that we need all three - Dedication, Discipline and Devotion to be writers over the long haul. She's correct, but naturally I have to add my $0.02.  

It seems to me that dedication and discipline both flow out of devotion. Writing every day over a long period of time is hard. In fact, the word “hard” doesn't begin to describe the difficulty level. Writers put ourselves through that pain because of devotion. Stated more simply we do it for love.

Someone did a study comparing the happiness of people with and without children and discovered people without children seemed to be happier. When a bunch of children I know heard about this little frowny wrinkles appeared between their eyebrows. Did they really make their parents unhappy?

"It's a different kind of happy," I said. Yeah, kids are a pain in the rear - expensive, noisy and destructive. And we wouldn't trade them for a million dollars or even a clean apartment on Fifth Avenue. 

Writing makes me a different kind of happy. 

I write every morning. Sometimes it's easy and fun and sometimes it's a chore and sometimes it's like walking across broken glass. Devotion gets me in the chair looking at the hungry blank page. Dedication and discipline alone can't do that. Only devotion. Only love.