Being a writer is like having homework
every night for the rest of your life.
I write every day. I spent my working life as a performing artist. Due to physical problems I can't work at that trade anymore, so now I write. I am amused to see that Google in its profile section under "industry" has no category marked "theatre," "film" "entertainment" or "show business." So I had to go with "arts." I guess that's okay. Artists have always been considered sub-citizens by the big corporate world, especially actors (except rich and promiscuous movie stars, some of whom are not "actors" in the strictest sense of the word). I'll settle for "arts."
Somerset Maugham said that if you want to be a writer you have to write everyday. In my case I write everyday whether I want to be a writer or not. I write because somehow I feel obligated to. I don't have a publisher or an agent tapping his impatient foot, nor a teacher gleefully giving me impossible assignments. I just think that if I didn't write something and put it in my journal every night I would be letting myself down and also possibly a few readers. So I write whether I feel like it or not.
I often sit at this keyboard and know I have nothing to say. So I check the mail, go for a walk, do a little reading, ponder, take a nap (old folks do that), wake up and have another cup of coffee, while I try to put a sentence or two together. Soon I give up, hopelessly admit a blank mind and an uncreative day. It's pure drudgery. I heave a sigh over my lumpish nature and decide that I'll just leave a quote and forget about it.
Silently and suddenly, like a squirrel showing up on the porch outside the window, a thought comes to me. And then another, and soon there are a few that line themselves up in a good order, Some words pop up, a phrase or two, an example, some language that appeals to me, colors and sounds, pictures, a new way of saying something and a feeling. The squirrel becomes a deer. And then everything begins to circle around a main idea like planets around the sun, each sending out its own energy and beauty and light. The marvelous English language starts caressing my mind. I can't type fast enough. I'm in love again.