Defying writing


Defying writing

By Joanie Buettgen

Copyright 2010

Family and friends find a writers’ life interesting. We hear the phrases, “Oh, I admire your writing. It must be easy for you.”

But, do these nice people realize, it’s complicated.

At times we feel like we’re in some sort of play that hasn’t started yet. Our audience sits in their seats anxiously waiting for scene one. The problem is the prospect is in limbo land. Our head hurts when our mind slips into remission. This feeling of doom and gloom is a result of hitting an invisible writing wall.

The computer screen is blank and blinking and has fallen asleep waiting for us to pound out the keys. Some days, inspiration hits like a ton of bricks. We complete our task just ahead of the deadline. At other moments our writing seems to have taken a back seat snooze. After our slumber, a quick inspiration has appeared and we must grab a pad and pencil, to capture the moment.

A constant problem is procrastination. We feel it, know it, and need it. You see, for some of us, it needs to stew in our minds. Then, when the recipe hits the boiling point, we rush to our keyboard to fire out the piece.

Many days we gather online, with our cohort friends who ask, “What are you writing?”

We feel squeamish at first, “Well, I’ve been thinking about a touching story on a dog.”

Then that popping noise blasts into our minds. Rushing to our computer we type up a rough draft.

If we are away from our terminal, we grab a napkin, a business card or maybe make a mental note to rush home and start to tap on our keyboard for hours. After two or three pages of text is written, saved, and savored, we put it to rest for the day. After a twenty-four hour cooling off period, we then edit and eventually send it off.

So, with this blog I want to say a gracious, “Thank you” to my dear friends. They are the ones who kicked me in the butt and told me politely to get going, never give up, and write, write and write some more.

Here’s a long distance toast to our writing passion, may it never die.

Published: Minnesota Moments Magazine, Web site, County Historical Society, Kansas City BBQ Society, Carver County News, National Barn Alliance, and Ridgeview Medical Center newsletter. Memberships: National Society of Newspaper Columnists, Toastmaster’s, Minnesota Newspaper Association, Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop attendee. Social Networking: Blog:,, http://www.linkedin/com/in/joaniebuettgen.


9 responses »

  1. Audrey, Oh…I can relate to your post! I now have tablets located in: on my bedroom nightstand; in my truck; at my desk; and of course one I carry in my purse, Thanks for your comments, Joanie

  2. Ah, the life of a writer…you captured so well the situations we sometimes face. Yesterday, for example, when I should have been fully-focused on my pastor’s sermon, I was alternately writing a blog post in my head and jotting sermon notes.

    And yesterday my middle brother declared that my husband should be proclaimed a saint because one night I asked said husband to bring me a notebook and a pen. I had an idea, but was too lazy to get out of bed. My husband, wonderful guy that he is, was still up and brought me a piece of paper.

    Inspiration strikes any time, anywhere.

    And then to write something, to string together words that you know are precisely write, what joy!

    Can you tell that I am absolutely, undeniably passionate about writing?

  3. I know what you mean. A friend once told me I wasn’t afraid to fail, I was afraid to succeed. I think she was right. What if I could not think of anything to say? What if nothing funny happend to me that I could write about? What if I had enough material for two weeks but not enough for two months? What if somebody said I want 6 articles by tomorrow? What if nothing funny every popped into my head? Glad to know other writers feel that way. And thank you for helping me.

  4. I know what you mean, Joanie. But look on h brighter side. You could be building a fence. Mine’s still in progress. Fortunately, only a few of my friends know that I try to write. The pressure is off – as long as I ge the fence done.


  5. Joanie
    I’m so glad you didn’t give in to the poor pitiful me’s. That is by far one of the best you have ever written. I feel touched by your thank you’s and so glad I’m a part of your writing community. You done good girl.
    Wanda Argersinger

  6. Writing is a solitary challenge and sometimes it feels like there is very little reward. But when the inspiration strikes, and the words flow smoothly, it is immensely satisfying.

    {{Raises glass}} Cheers and best wishes to you!

  7. Joanie,
    Great piece. And, thanks for the gentle kick in the butt. Both you and Mike offered that this morning.
    I guess today is the day to get into gear. My first project is to tackle the piles that have accumulated in my dining room since my return. “They” say a mind cannot work clearly in a cluttered space. Soooooooo!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s