Monday, June 30, 2014

Cognitive Recalibration

AKA "I hit you really hard in the head."

So Dr. Dina has been very busy this year. The majority of my posts have been recycled material when I remember it's my day to post (I've been averaging one post a month, and that will not do), and that's not really fair to you, the readers.

It does, however, make for good material for this blog.

I'm going to rant a little on a subject that's been discussed on my own blog, our Bitchstress Dreamkiller's blog, this blog, and countless others. It's been discussed many times in many different ways, but I'm going to bring it up again because it's still an issue.

In case you're new around here, the Evil League of Evil Writers' form of motivational speaking/inspiration involves pointy or blunt objects, depending on the poster's preference. (I prefer pointy, but blunt has its uses.) Today I'm going to go with a baseball bat, because some of you writers out there need a good beating.

"What is it?!" you cry as you run clumsily away from the serial-killer-stalkery of Dina-with-a-clue-bat, looking over your shoulder to see if I'm getting closer despite your running and my walking. (Hint: I am, because that's how the Serial Killer Stalk works – you run, I walk, I get ahead of you and bludgeon the shit out of you. Seriously. Watch any of the Friday the 13th films.)

Today's "it" is having time to write.

I hear it all the time (and it sends me into orbit) –

"I'd love to write, but I don't have time!"

"I have so much to do, I can't waste time writing!"

"You're so lucky! You have so much time to write!"

"It must be so nice to have time to write!" (This one is my favorite because it's said passive-aggressively in a "Wow, you have so much free time to sit on your ass! Some of us have actual lives and can't devote time to cute leisure activities!" way.)

Excuse. The Fuck. Out of you. Asshole.

Listen to me very, very carefully:




Everyone, from unpublished writers to bestselling authors, has lives. Laundry. Dishes. Kids. Health issues. Financial issues. Family issues. Issues in general.

"Yes, but Big Name Author has a housekeeper/assistant/ *insert excuse here* and I'm just little me! I can't-"


Stop right there.

You see what you did there? See that? Look at that sentence again. What's the word at the end there? Come on…you're a writer! You know words!


See that? That word? There's your problem, right there.

It's not that you "can't." The problem is you "won't."

Think about that for a minute. Go on. I'll wait.

*knits a row on her latest project*


Did you understand the sentence? Really understand it? Because that's really what this whole thing is about.

You can write. You probably have. I don't care if it's three words on a napkin at lunch, or fifteen pages at 3AM before you shower for your 5AM shift.

You "want to write?" Fuck you. You don't "want to" write. You either write or you don't. You make time, you don't find it. Time isn't hiding behind the couch, waiting for you to find it. And again-


They write. Period. Whether that's before the kids get up from school or after they're in bed at night, between loads of laundry, on your lunch break, on your smoke break, ten minutes while dinner is cooking…they're writing.

I hear you over there. "Dina, that just doesn't work for me! If I can't have a chunk of quiet time in which to write, I'm just not able to do it!"

Well then, it sucks to be you. I refer you to the above statement about "can't" versus "won't." You can adapt. You can make it work. You can change your attitude and learn to work with what you've got, if you really want to. The problem is you. You're not willing to change your behavior, make the time, make the adjustments, then shut the fuck up about how you "want to write" because you clearly don't want it badly enough.

As I said, everyone has lives, and everyone has issues. The difference between "wanting to write" and being a writer is making with the words.

So go make them. You can. You just have to make it happen. Get up ten minutes earlier. Go to bed twenty minutes later. And this applies to everything in your life, from unfucking your habitat to starting that exercise thing you said you were going to do this year. You can do it. Whether you will do it is up to you, and that's really it.

It's all about what you want and how badly you want it.

More than that, it's about your attitude. That old 80s movie The Last Starfighter says it perfectly:

Main Character Alex: "Come on, Centauri, I'm just a kid from a trailer park-"

Centauri: *points at him, punctuating each word with a gesture* "If that's what you think, then that's all you'll ever be!"

And that's really it. If you think you don't have time for writing, then you don't, and you never will. It's total bullshit, but that's what it comes down to. There will never be time. It will never be "the right time." You'll never have time when you're inspired to write, and inspiration will never come to you when you finally decide you have the time.

You fucking write. That's it. That is it, and that is all.

Adjust your attitude. Change your perspective.

Run faster.

How's that for motivation?


  1. Good gobbledygook but I love you. Thanks for the bruise. (Oh I write daily but sometimes I get lazy. I needed the kick).

    1. Whenever you need a fresh one, just come here. We'll be happy to beat the shit out of you anytime, whether you need it or not.

  2. So need to share this! Great post.


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