Of course it is.
Writing should always be a second job. It’s not a hobby. It’s not a pastime. And it is most certainly not something to “dabble” in. Writing is work.
Harlan Ellison said it in his own eloquent way:
People on the outside think there’s something magical about writing, that you go up in the attic at midnight and cast the bones and come down in the morning with a story, but it isn’t like that. You sit in back of the typewriter and you work, and that’s all there is to it.
The man worked plenty: 70 books, some 400 short stories, dozens of TV screenplays and more than 1,000 essays, introductions and columns. My favorite story about Harlan Ellison is one he repeated many times over.
He wrote stories while sitting in a bookstore window, placing the pages up as he finished them for all to see without mistakes.
Here’s a writer who not only said writing was work, he sat down and showed people how it was done. It isn’t new to watch an artist paint a painting; it is something different to watch a writer create a story live.
And we see people working all the time. On street corners, in offices, in schools, in laboratories.
There are professional writers – for them writing is a fulltime job. People who work for newspapers, magazines and those who write content for adverting and the many writers who have their own sites on a multitude of digital platforms.
What I’m talking about here is for all writers to join the same ranks, to look at whatever they are writing as a destination – the same as the one they go to when they get up and go to work. You may not pack a lunch, wear overalls, gloves or protective eyewear but you do have tools of the trade.
Imagination, a laptop, pen and paper, a notebook and of course, stamina.
Writing is a job because it’s work.
And when writing is work we can give it a place in time the same way we give a day job. We start writing at a certain time and we stop writing at a certain time, even if it’s in spurts they are dedicated spurts.
Writing needs its own slot in our day. In our lives. It needs a go to place just like any other job.
Writing is always a second job. Whether we work in spurts or long days the words add up. We are rewarded with paragraphs, dialog, scenes. Writing makes dreams real. Dreams of novels. Plays. Books of poetry. Short stories. Whatever we can dream up we can write.
There can be no failure in writing, only failure in not writing.
So, get to work and whatever you do for a day job know that writing is always your second job. Until one day it won’t be.
One day writing will be your only job.
Christina for Penpaperwrite
The next 60 Scenes® Writing Method 1-Day Workshop is July 20th – find out more about how to use this easy method to write a novel or a screenplay. Take your idea to the next level and learn skills like how to Storyboard, how to use the Outer Journey for Plot and the Inner Journey of the Hero to craft compelling characters.
Only fifteen spaces for each workshop – sign up here: