“But if you’re no longer in love with writing, for whatever reasons, then there are only three choices. The first is to abandon writing and look for a new love. The second is to continue with your dull marriage, writing but not loving. The third is to fall in love again.” ~ Eric Maisel, Living the Writer’s Life
The relationship between a writer and writing is a type of marriage, and one thing I have learned from a long marriage union to my husband is that on any given day we arrive at one of the three places named above. In any relationship, we have times of not loving, times of dullness when we carry on but wish we did not, and then times when we fall blessedly back in love again. The think to know is that each of these places of our heart is a choice.
Love is a choice. Not loving is a choice.
I went through each of the three places in my heart many times with writing. Not understanding myself or the nature of love and attitude, I slogged through years of a dull writing life, with one foot out the door, thinking that I had to do something different. When that door opened wide enough, out I went. I transferred my writing affections to caring for a new home and a small boy. It was right to do at the time.
Now I arrive where the choice is to be made again. Am I to write? I dabbled for sometime. And then I made the choice to fall in love with writing, head over heels, all over again.
This is no immature love. I’m in love this time with eyes wide open. Every weekday, I meet my love of writing and work on my project, and in between that, I read and pay attention to words. I play with words and express the pictures I see in my mind, shaving here, refining there, trying to express what I see and feel and know. This love has nothing whatsoever to do with publishing but all to do with my relationship with writing. I know now that being in love with writing means I give it my commitment. I pledge my heart to the writing.
Commitment to our unique way of life, then is our task today and every day. It is not to be undertaken for our self-improvement, nor for salvation of the world or society, but simply because we can do no other if we are to be true to the individual hypothesis of our lives. ~ Helen M. Luke, Women, Earth, and Spirit
4 thoughts on “Gleanings: If You’re no Longer in Love With Writing, and other places of commitment”
I had never read this before and am so glad that now I have. I’m never frightened by the “dull” parts of marriage, because a long marriage lets you see the layers so well and so often that you know it’ll be brighter again soon. I am, however, always scared when I don’t love writing. I think this quote–and the picture you drew from it–will make me feel better.
Liz, thanks for letting me know something I said had value for you. Why we write! 🙂 You make me think, too, and realize that I don’t think I ever didn’t love writing. It was that I loved something else more– my son, for instance, the year I took off writing and homeschooled him. What a joy that was! Yet, I came back to writing. As I’ve done this time. I took time off to make a new home in a new place, for relationship with my family. And now I return to writing. Can be said that writing is a lover who is not jealous and is always there, waiting for us to turn.
The Loves of Ruby Dee is among my top favorites. I have read it many times. Looking forward to reading your new books.
Sent from my iPad
Thank you so very much, Murlene! The Loves of Ruby Dee may be my favorite, too.