You’ve got passion, right? I’ve got it, too, in droves. I am passionate about many things—my family, my writing, my hobbies, creativity, teaching, France, wine, and popcorn. Okay, maybe popcorn doesn’t quite qualify as a passion.
I’m certain you could also reel off a list of things about which you are passionate. And writing would be chief among them. Because that’s why we do it, is it not? Sure, we have dreams of publication, recognition, maybe even earning a living at it. But at heart we write because we love to do it. Because we’re passionate about it.
But what about consistency? What are the things you are consistent about? I’m pretty consistent about doing and enjoying the things on my list, probably a bit too much so when it comes to the popcorn and wine. Hahaha.
It is funny—and enlightening—to think about our passions and our consistency in the same brain neuron. Because that is where they need to be. Linked together like two peas in a pod, or an old married couple. Completely, totally entwined.
Happy people with full, engaged lives are people who make time for their passions. Unhappy people meander through life, spending time farting around on the internet instead of writing their novel. Or obsessively cleaning the house instead of painting. As Annie Dillard said, and I have so often quoted, “How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.”
And let me just tell you something. Your passion isn’t going to last long if you’re not consistent about it. Off it will evaporate in a puff of steam, probably unnoticed by you. Use it or lose it. They say that about the brain, but it is also true about your passions. But consistency is damn freaking hard to accomplish when you can barely even get your butt in the chair to write once in a blue moon, isn’t it?
Why yes. Yes, it is. But never mind how you manage it. You must find a way to make it happen. And the best way I know how to accomplish that is to let your passion fuel the consistency.
It’s like meditation, or exercise. You have to do it regularly enough so that the doing feels better than the not doing. Where if you don’t meditate for a few days you feel edgy. If you don’t exercise for a while, you feel lazy. If you don’t write, you feel lost.
So let your passion fuel your consistency. And before long, passion and consistency will be cozied up together, as snug and happy as two bugs in a rug. How are you spending your days? Are you consistently enjoying your passions? Or not? If not, when will you begin?
Leave a comment and tell me what you’re passionate about this summer.
*** New! I’m offering Conjuring Calls at a very low price. Why the name? Because we are going to conjure up some magic for you—be it brainstorming plot intricacies, tips on getting you to the page regularly, or accomplishing that thing you’ve stalled out on. Doesn’t have to be writing related, but of course, it can! Hit reply and tell me you’re interested and I’ll email you the details.
**** And remember, I have a Facebook now. It is called Prolific and Prosperous Writers, because that is what we all want to be, right? Please come join us! I made it a closed group, so we can have some privacy to discuss those writerly issues the rest of the world might not understand. Just head here and ask to join.
(By the way, this post is based on the weekly newsletter I send out. Join us! Just fill out the form to the right.)