The sermon at church this week has had me wondering what I could choose to give up or take on for Lent. Which further made me wonder about what would be especially applicable to me to do as a writer.
I don’t think I am unique among writers in experiencing my life as a constant tug of war between creative energy and laziness, ego and embarrassment, reverence and irreverence.
Given that, I am wondering what temporary practice would be most useful for my writer soul? (Especially if, as our priest suggested, Lenten sacrifices or practices are designed less for self-improvement than for self-knowledge?)
So, I tried to come up with some ideas.
Stuff I could give up…
- Some of the excessive time I spend on social media and digital distractions in general. The Freedom App looks very intriguing for that.
- Checking sales reports or author rank. Surely once a week should be sufficient. But tell that to my fingers. They sometimes click on the KDP Report when I’m not even trying to go there.
- Checking for reviews. This is especially pointless this far between books.
- TV news. I get two newspapers and the Internet. I certainly don’t need as much TV news as I habitually watch (local news plus two national broadcasts each night, plus the Daily Show from the night before).
- Eating while working. This is how my plans for a full healthy meal so often degenerate into little bits of this and that. Maybe I could find a way to play National Public Radio while cooking and address these last two bullet items at once.
Stuff I could take on…
- Daily exercise. I’m actually already working on that (and my daily word counts along with many fine writers in the Women Fiction Writer’s Association), so maybe it wouldn’t count for Lent.
- More disciplined reading of fiction and professional books. I am drowning in excellent books I have not read, or have started and not finished. Less TV or social media would allow more time for that.
- Meditation on a more regular basis. Maybe. I am skeptical. I honestly suspect I get the same benefits during long walks, gardening, photography, and sitting around with a cat on my lap.
- Not putting off all my business accounting until the last minute. Yeah, let’s not even pretend I’m going to do that.
- More visiting with actual live human beings in the same room as me. Eh. I might just focus on one neighbor who needs this and not worry about my overall sociability. I am an introvert, after all.
- Prayer. Bwa ha ha ha. The weakest link in my spiritual life by far. I have almost zero faith in prayer. But maybe, since that is my reaction, I should give it a try. A short prayer ideal for writers sitting down to draft? Hmm.
What about you, writers or non-writers? Do you have Lenten plans?
— Sandra Hutchison