The Writer’s Curse: You Can Never Stop Working

If you’re a writer, you know that you’re doomed.  Doomed to a life of eternally working.  Time off from the day job just means you have more time to write, more time dedicated to being chained to your desk and the invisible spiderweb deadlines that you construct for yourself.  Maybe I’m just speaking for myself, but every moment that other people would spend relaxing–watching television, taking naps, doing absolutely nothing–I feel like I should pack full with productive writing.  I constantly feel like I’m wasting my time unless I’m using it to work on my craft.  Because I like making polls, here’s one for you:

For example, I’m feeling rather stressed that I’m only waiting on a few short stories.  A few months ago I had a huge long list of things pending at literary journals.  With the list being so short, and me not having written any new material in an embarrassingly long amount of time, I’m feeling a great deal of writerly stress.  Am I alone or is this an occupational hazard?  While you wait for your rejection and/or acceptance letters, do you continually stress?

  • Painted Bride Quarterly (date submitted: January 4th; what submitted: 1 fiction, 1 non-fiction)  Official Response Time:  unknown
  • Cicada (date submitted: February 16th; what submitted: 2 poems)  Official Response Time: up to 4 months
  • storySouth (date submitted: June 1st; what submitted: 1 fiction)  Official Response Time: 2-6 months
  • Weave magazine (date submitted:  June 1st; what submitted: 1 non-fiction)  Official Response Time: 3 months
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3 thoughts on “The Writer’s Curse: You Can Never Stop Working

    • hannahkarena says:

      Yes, exactly! I think there’s a huge load of guilt involved with writing. It’s like I’m always guilt-tripping myself for not working harder. But at the same time, I do reward myself rather often after writing…maybe too often. My internal self: “Writing is so hard, you deserve to take a break and do something time consuming and fun. It’s research…right?”

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