Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Bird By Bird - Inspiration

For the next few weeks, Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott will be my inspiration. I actually heard her speak at a PAN retreat during an RWA convention and I must admit I felt spellbound and went out to buy the book.

In her introduction I found three things that struck home then and still do to day. The first is what happens when you see something you've written in print for the first time. "It provides some sort of primal verification: you are in print, therefore you exist. I think that explains the feeling. The great thing is that this happens every time a new book you've written appears on the shelf.

Another piece of advice that proves true is something her father said. "Do it every day." This is something I've tried to complete. In fact, I find if I go for too many days without writing I become cranky. What one is doing when they write even if it's no more than a paragraph is establishing a habit. Once established, a habit is hard to break.

"Publication is not all that it is cracked up to be. But writing is." She's correct here. For me the reward for writing is not the money or the awards but the entering another world peopled by characters I know as well as myself. That's because every character contains a bit of myself.

How about you? Do you agree with the things I've pulled from this book that push me to write every day. Why? Because that's what I am.


Anonymous said...

Janet, Bird by Bird is one of my all time favorite writing books. And I love every point you highlighted, it is all true. I always remember the story of the book report due with all the birds, and the dad putting his hand on the son's shoulder, stating, "Take it bird by bird, son." That is what I try to do with everything!!!

Wendy S Marcus said...

I can't wait to experience the feeling of seeing my book in print. (Although, quite honestly, it scares the crap out of me!) And I'm trying to write every single day. It seems to be working! Safe and happy new year!