How I Make Myself Write: A Dialogue

I don’t wanna.

What do you want to do instead?

Go back to sleep? Check emails? Have a snack? Watch TV?


I could apply to jobs. That’s productive.

What kind of jobs?

I don’t know.

What do you like doing?

Teaching creative writing.

Then be a goddamn creative writer, and do your creative writing.

Is it too late to become a lawyer or something?


But I can’t write. Nobody’s telling me how.

They’re not going to. You have to figure it out for yourself.

But I can’t figure it out.

Then the book won’t get written.

This book is going to suck.

It might.

I don’t want it to suck.

You have a choice. You can try writing it, knowing that it might suck, or you can walk away now.

What if I walk away?

You went to school for writing. You went into debt for writing. You told people you were a writer. You wrote stories and got them published. What would people think?

They’d think I was a failure.

Wrong! Nobody cares. You could spend the rest of your life sleeping or snacking or watching television, or even becoming a not very good lawyer, and no one would care. The real question is: What would you think of yourself if you walked away now?

I’d think I was a failure.

So what’s your other option?

I can try writing it, knowing that it might suck.

Right. So buck up, muster a little dignity, and try to finish this fucking thing.