Do You Write like a Mother****er ?

For the past two weeks, I’ve been wrestling with my writing.

So today I’m going to break two rules on my blog I set eight years ago:

a. Don’t get too personal/ vulnerable

b. Don’t use swearwords, keep it PG13.

Writing tips
Write like a Mother****er!!

That’s because I want to share an advice an author I admire, Cheryl Strayed, had (at the time, anonymously) given to a struggling writer who wrote to her, essentially saying, and I quote,

“I want to jump out the window for what I’ve boiled down to is one reason: I can’t write a book.”

I’m pretty near that point these days, and no amount of lame humor is keeping me very far away from it! So, by way of telling myself in a really Loud and Clear way, I want to share the following excerpt: (Please read it if you’re into any sort of artistic endeavor, or in despair about your abilities in any field at all.)

We get the work done on the ground level. And the kindest thing I can do for you is to tell you to get your ass on the floor. I know it’s hard to write, darling. But it’s harder not to. The only way you’ll find out if you “have it in you” is to get to work and see if you do. The only way to override your “limitations, insecurities, jealousies, and ineptitude” is to produce. You have limitations. You are in some ways inept… You will feel insecure and jealous. How much power you give those feelings is entirely up to you.

…Write so blazingly good that you can’t be framed. …People of all professions suffer and kill themselves. In spite of various mythologies regarding artists and how psychologically fragile we are, the fact is that occupation is not a top predictor for suicide. Yes, we can rattle off a list of women writers who’ve killed themselves and yes, we may conjecture that their status as women in the societies in which they lived contributed to the depressive and desperate state that caused them to do so. But it isn’t the unifying theme.

You know what is?

The unifying theme is resilience and faith. The unifying theme is being a warrior and a motherfucker. It is not fragility. It’s strength. It’s nerve. And “if your Nerve, deny you –,” as Emily Dickinson wrote, “go above your Nerve.” Writing is hard for every last one of us—straight white men included. Coal mining is harder. Do you think miners stand around all day talking about how hard it is to mine for coal? They do not. They simply dig.

I want to know what you have inside you. I want to see the contours of your second beating heart.

So write…. Not like a girl. Not like a boy. Write like a motherfucker.

I think that’s excellent advice.

Instead of worrying about the darkness of the coal mine, the dust, my lungs, the walls about to cave in and the flash floods, I’m just fixing my flashlight and my helmet and hitting out with that shovel, or whatever it is coal miners use these days.

So dear writers, do you write like a mother****er?

And all those who read but do not write, when you read a book, do you ever wonder about the process a writer went through?

Any words of advice for a writer in crisis?

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I love comments, and I always visit back. Blogging is all about being a part of a community, and communities are about communication! Tweet me up @damyantig !

71 comments

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  1. ccyager

    I can relate so much! It’s been especially difficult to have confidence in my writing when my novel hasn’t been selling at Amazon or B&N.com. I KNOW it’s a good story. I KNOW it’s well-written. The people who have bought it and read it who took the time to contact me have all loved it, found it really interesting and thought-provoking. I wrote it like a motherfucker.
    Cinda

  2. shaunwebb

    First off, great article. It got me off of my feet and motivated to write better. My advice for a write is to provide three things for their readers: Educate, inspire, and entertain. If you live an interesting life, you got those three things down.

  3. cynthiamvoss

    No other advice besides keep trying, keep going. I’m trying to follow it myself. I really need to make myself sit down and write more frequently, and the more I don’t do that the more annoyed and anxious I get. We just have to keep trying. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes, just keep going. Good luck to you!

  4. bsylent

    Thanks for this! This week I have been attempting to ‘write like a mfkr’, and it has brought up a lot of old insecurities and forced me to find a way to shut up that part my brain and just WRITE! I believe writers can be more sensitive and empathetic due to our need to connect to everything, but that does not make us weaker. As noted, there are women writers who took their lives, and there is a string of make writers who drank themselves to death, but neither speaks to the power of these individuals nor to the millions of other writers who push on and write despite obscurity, rejection and self-judgement. I will write on, on up days and down ones, and I will finish this damn book.

    Thanks again!

  5. Silvia Writes

    Yes, I try to write like a motherfucker, that’s for sure. It works, sometimes.
    To the writer looking for advice, I would say write because the stories in you … only you could tell them. And we all write because those stories burn inside us, and it’s hell if we don’t use this wonderful form of therapy at our disposal, which is writing.

  6. Peter Nena

    I am in a crisis myself. Haven’t written a thing since March. Tried, tried, tried. Nothing yet. I have actually attempted six stories so far, including a manuscript I abandoned three-quarter way for a new thrilling idea. Big mistake, because the thrilling idea was rejected in April–which is one of the causes of my present stagnation. The editor took time to give me some ideas she thought I should exploit in order for them to publish my story. She said my story was too scary for anyone to read to the end. She herself had not finished it . “It’s as if you write for freaks,” she said. Then, assuming I lacked ideas, went on to give me some, which I found rather simplistic and repulsive. I told her that I write horror; none of that stuff she had in mind. But the rejection seized me afterwards. I haven’t produced anything since then.

  7. Peter Nena

    I am in a crisis myself. Haven’t written a thing since March. Tried, tried, tried. Nothing yet. I have actually attempted six stories so far, including a manuscript I abandoned three-quarter way for a new thrilling idea. Big mistake, because the thrilling idea was rejected in April–which is one of the causes of my present stagnation. The editor took time to give me some ideas she thought I should exploit in order for them to publish my story. She said my story was too scary for anyone to read to the end. She herself had not finished it . “It’s as if you write for freaks,” she said. Then, assuming I lacked ideas, went on to give me some, which I found rather simplistic and repulsive. I told her that I write horror; none of that stuff she had in mind. But the rejection seized me afterwards. I haven’t produced anything since then.

  8. Peter Nena

    I am in crisis myself. Haven’t written a thing since March. Tried, tried, tried. Nothing yet. I have actually attempted six stories so far, including continuing a manuscript I abandoned three-quarter way for a new thrilling idea. Big mistake, because the thrilling idea was rejected in April–which is one of the causes of my present stagnation. The editor took time to give some ideas I should exploit in order for them to publish my story. She said my story was too scary for anyone to read to the end. She herself had not finished it . “It’s as if you write for freaks,” she said. Then, assuming I lacked ideas, she went on to give me some, which I found rather simplistic and repulsive. I told her that I write horror; none of that stuff she had in mind. But the rejection seized me. I haven’t produced anything since then.

  9. terryspear

    I set goals, even if the writing won’t come. I have deadlines too, so I really can’t just not write. Sometimes I write a scene that appears later in the book, brainstorm with others or myself. I’ve been told if you write 20 ideas, then take the path least expected, usually the one that doesn’t come to mind until the end of your list can help make it different and unique. Sometimes I read someone else’s book, or read the news (I get some ideas from the news), see a movie, take photographs, play with new book covers, make teddy bears, and then I’m back to writing, Sometimes I think the book is awful, until I set it aside and read it again and think it’s pretty darn good. I have to remind myself every single time that the beginning is NEVER the beginning. It’s just a start meant for revisions. So write freely, and then you have something to work with. If you don’t write anything, there is nothing to revise. 🙂 So give yourself the freedom just to write. That’s what I have to continually tell myself on nearly every new book I write!

  10. Clear Wind Blows Over the Moon

    One of my favourite writers, Richard Wagamese, teaches that when it gets too hard to write he knows he’s in his head and so he stops and takes a break. He also has a unique style in that he will speak aloud his story on walks in nature on the land with his dog. He says his dog gives him feedback till he hones in on the story and after a few weeks or this, he heads to the computer to type it out and writes about 7 pages a day, unedited! I am inspired by him and his talks. His books move me like no other writer and are difficult for me to read only because of all the feelings each page evokes – I need to pause often. He is also First Nations and speaks of the oral traditions of our people and the spoken word and thus why speaking aloud the story is so important and it works. Best to you and your writing.

    • Damyanti

      Thankyou for introducing me to this wonderful author..and his method sounds like something I would do for smaller pieces. Just haven’t got the chops to do it for a novel yet!

  11. iancooper74

    I have found my home in this blog! I like your ‘get it done’ attitude to writing. I read ‘The War of Art’ by Stephen Pressfield recently and that really kicked my writing up a gear. Writing for one to two hours a day takes me to that place where I can forget about the pressures and worries of everyday life which is a good thing, but sometimes I have to force myself to get there. Writers are strange people indeed.

    • Damyanti

      Ian, yes we writers are strange. I’m glad this post gave you some support. It is really the War of Art on some days. isn’t it?

  12. G.B. Miller

    No mercy for the writer!

    Seriously though, sometimes, you just have to have to follow the philosophy of sitting buttocks in chair and write. Doesn’t matter what you write, so long as you write. Even if its just applying ten pages worth of editing notes that you scribbled down on a printed copy. Eventually, you’ll go beyond the applying of editing notes and actually continue with the story.

    I have a tendency to switch from project to project in order to keep my sanity fresh. If I dwell on something too long, eventually I’ll become paralyzed with inaction. Occasionally though, I’ll have a breakthrough and discover a solution to the problem and will drop what I’m doing to work on it.

    • Damyanti

      I follow the same strategy of doing multiple projects– the trouble is, this one’s on a deadline, and I have to deliver :). The ‘butt in chair’ is sterling advice.

  13. dtbloom

    The first draft is always crap…but it’s always fixable. Getting the story down is arguably the most difficult part. My first novel started as an idea, then a novella…but I wanted it to be more. So I tinkered, brought in new characters and new ideas. Now that first novel is the first book of a trilogy. It is a much different story than what it was in the beginning, but I think it’s much better. In fact, the second and third books of the trilogy, to me, are each stronger than the ones before.

    Keep writing.

    • Damyanti

      I’ve been fixing my drafts for a while now– hoping this is as near to the last one as it gets– but that might be wishful thinking!

  14. whynotbeme

    The key to writing books, I have found, is to minimize the chances of losing interest in the work you’re doing. Doing this requires being able to accept whether the idea you have for the book is rich enough to keep your interest for 65,000 words. If you’re not sure, give it a try. The best way to tell is to develop the idea and the characters and the plot that go in it. Build it up and start planning it out beforehand. And then just start writing the thing. And if you fail, well, just get a new idea and start over. And at the same time, cultivate discipline in your life. If you’re ever going to write a book, you have to be to able to work on it even if it doesn’t interest you. That’s the catch. But if your ideas are good enough, if you wait for and seek out the best possible ideas and people and experiences and feeling to write about, that won’t happen.
    Also, write about what you know. That helps.

    • Damyanti

      And at the same time, cultivate discipline in your life. If you’re ever going to write a book, you have to be to able to work on it even if it doesn’t interest you. That’s the catch. But if your ideas are good enough, if you wait for and seek out the best possible ideas and people and experiences and feeling to write about, that won’t happen.
      Also, write about what you know. That helps.

      All very good advice.
      I guess because I’m a first-timer, I’m getting frustrated with how long it is taking. I manage pretty well with short stories– but you’re right, the novel is another beast altogether. I get periodic bouts of can’t-take-this-anymore, then oh-wow-let’s-work-on-it. I think I’m transiting from the former to the latter even as we speak!

      • whynotbeme

        You might consider doing something in the plot that shakes things up, that draws you back in. I think it was Mickey Spillane (or was it Raymond Chandler?) who was asked what he does when he starts to get bored with a piece of writing. He said, “I just send a guy with a gun into the room.” so maybe you just need to think of your “guy with a gun”, whatever it is, to shake your dtory up a little, to re-engage your imagination. Worth a shot 🙂

        • Damyanti

          Hehe, that’s been done, twice. I have nothing left from the original draft other than the characters and the setting. I have introduced the guns :). Thank you so much for returning with more advice. Truly appreciate it.

  15. kezysblog

    I love writing. But at times its so hard it’s like learning to walk or talk again. I know what I want to say, it’s just not coming out the way I want it to. I spend alot of time agonising about what I’ve written and not written. What people think and don’t think, and it’s a head mess, every day. For me, my biggest challenge in trying to conquer this is just to write, write, write, and hopefully one day something will come out that makes sense. But until then, I just put finger on laptop and type like a mother f***er.

    • Damyanti

      Writing is not a problem at all, I can write or edit everyday– or at least so far– the problem is the rough patch right now, when I’m grappling a bit in the dark, despite having drafted earlier.

      Yep, I need to be finger on laptop and typing away!

  16. Lucy

    I write every day, but then I dance like no one’s watching, and write like no one’s reading, otherwise neither of those things would happen.

  17. Birgit

    I think fear is what stops many in their tracks from achieving something they actually can do quite well. Never give up, never surrender!

  18. Steven Baird

    Wow, if that doesn’t do it, I don’t know what advice I could bring. It’s hard work, yes, but relax your creative muscles. Rest your mind. It will come to you. Let your passion chase you.

  19. mdellert

    Personally, I write like a mother****ing RIOT.

    Words of advice? Pull up your big girl pants and get back to work. 😉

    I did use to wonder what it would take. Then I did it. And I still wonder what it takes. It’s a fight with the devil, and you have to claw for every inch of advantage.

    But if you don’t do it for your story, who will?

    So like I said, pull up your big girl pants. There’s work to be done, and you’re burning daylight.

  20. lauraalyce

    I have to say I know that feeling. I can’t write a book. I want to, sure. I have many, many pages of a crappy first draft written down, and there’s nothing I want more than to finish it, but I can’t. I struggle with those words a lot. I’m not sure I have any advice, because I’m right there with you at the moment.

    What I can say, however, is that I’ve been through a period where I wrote absolutely nothing at all, and it was heartbreaking. I’m now in a place where one particular story is flowing pretty steadily out of me – and despite the fact that I feel bad somehow that I’m writing something else instead of writing my book – I’m pretty happy with this. So I think I’m trying to say if you have your heart set on a big idea of a book, maybe set it aside for a little bit and let whatever other idea that takes your interest come out instead. Writing something is better than writing nothing.

    I hope that made some sense. Good luck.

    • Damyanti

      Thankyou for stopping by Laura. I have the feeling I can’t write a book, too. But I’m pigheaded enough to never let my feelings come in the way of my doings.

      This may or may not become a book, but I shall keep on keeping on at it. 🙂 As a dear, departed friend used to say often, Keep on swimming…

  21. Yolanda Renee

    Great advice, and really true. The problem, at least in my opinion, is the internet, and the awareness of so much beyond the writing. I love writing, and honestly don’t suffer with writer block as much as there’s always something else drawing my attention, and yes, a lot of that is online activity. Which, for the modern writer is a requirement, and now part of the contract. My best advice for someone struggling, walk away, do something mundane, you’ll look forward to sitting your ass down and picking up that pen. If you’re stuck on a plot line, another tool I use is to frame the problem in my head right before I fall asleep, usually the answer comes to me when i awaken, sometimes it’s the reason I wake up, because the answer has shown itself, or sometimes it comes to me in the shower. I get the best ideas in the shower. 🙂

    • Damyanti

      Sound bits of advice– ones I often find myself doling out.
      I don’t think I have a writer’s block, more of a book block. But I shall keep on trying to vault, bulldoze, sneak, my way though it.

  22. Sabrina Flynn

    Writing is work. Some days I feel like going to work; some days I don’t. But I do it anyway. And when the book is done, I can’t tell what parts I wrote in an inspired mood and what parts I were just plain stubbornness.

    I disagree with the ‘write so blazingly good that you can’t be framed’. I think that the expectation of producing something awesome is what paralyzes most people. Instead, I say, write utter crap. Get your first draft down, finish it, THEN go back and edit it until it shines.

    • Damyanti

      Instead, I say, write utter crap. Get your first draft down, finish it, THEN go back and edit it until it shines.

      I’m dealing with the crap I’ve produced, right now ;). If nothing else, persevering with this will teach me a few writing tricks.

      • Sabrina Flynn

        So true! And don’t be afraid to take a chainsaw to your first draft. Finding an honest beta reader who has similar book tastes to your own is a huge help too.

  23. davidprosser

    Try taking a week away from writing and during that time finding something else you’re good at and want to do.At the end of the week ( if you make it) you’ll see whether you want to stick with your new choice or return to writing. If the choice is writing then you just have to put down words on paper and not worry about sorting and editing them until you’ve finished,because getting the words down is most important.
    Don’t worry about submissions as there’s always the indie route but before you do anything, make sure someone reads your work and gives honest criticism as you my have to consider changes.
    xxx Huge Hugs xxx

    • Damyanti

      I love writing, I do. It is editing that’s getting my goat this time around. I am going to do several beta exchanges before I consider querying…let’s see how it goes.

  24. rxena77

    Odd, I wrote a similar post (but not as well) on my blog last night. Alex is right: creating something out of the ether of our minds is difficult, but we are not surgeons continuing to operate while the shells are dropping outside our M.A.S.H. unit. We are not firefighters trying to fight a house fire while the occupants are screaming for help from within.

    Writing is simply putting words on paper (or the computer screen) as best we can, striving to do it better today than yesterday with the goal of doing it better tomorrow.

    We must make writing a habit. We set aside time each day to write, research, ponder, and then edit what we wrote in the morning. Oh, and live.

    Neil Gaiman once told a talented young man that his words lacked soul, for he had not lived. He had a way of putting a phrase together but he had nothing worthwhile to say with it.

    He suggested living life a bit and then get back to writing. Neil took his own advice with THE GRAVEYARD BOOK. He would write, see his talent was not up to what he wanted to say, live a year or two, and then get back to the book.

    For me writing is a way of life, a way of putting form to my dreams with the knowledge that no one promises me that anyone will care to read it after I am done. Great post. 🙂

    • rxena77

      As always, I have read a master ( in this case William Saroyan) who stated my thoughts much better than I could. And just seconds after I had waxed philosophic too! How humbling:

      The Armenian-American writer William Saroyan was born on this day in 1908.

      One of the most popular writers of mid-century, Saroyan published over sixty books before his death in 1981, most of them in his lyrical style, expressing his belief in the little guy and the simple-but-full life, as captured in this advice to writers:

      “Try to learn to breathe deeply, really to taste food when you eat, and when you sleep really to sleep. Try as much as possible to be wholly alive with all your might, and when you laugh, laugh like hell. And when you get angry, get good and angry. Try to be alive. You will be dead soon enough.”

      • Damyanti

        Ronald, thankyou for this very detailed comment. Every word of it makes sense.
        I think what I’m suffering from is too much closeness with the manuscript, and I’m not able to avoid that due to deadlines.

        I’m in much better spirits today than when I wrote the post, and hopefully, all your good advice would teach me to live a little even as I practice the discipline of writing.

  25. Jacqui Murray

    I’m getting that depressed feeling, too, that maybe I can’t write. It’s got more to do with quiery letter rejections than anything substantive, but I can’t always argue with emotion. It decouples from reality and there’s no way to reattach it.

    For a while. And then it fixes itself.

    • Damyanti

      Mine is beginning to fix itself, I think, Jacqui. I think the fixing began with this post, and continued as I read the comments.

      I’m so sorry you’re going through the rejection-self-torture part of a writer’s journey. Here’s my comment on the topic: http://ow.ly/RGKcI

      Here’s hoping you land an agent soon, as I know you will. You’re a fab writer, don’t ever, ever doubt that.

  26. Somali K Chakrabarti

    The advice about writing so blazingly good that you can’t be framed is excellent Damyanti. However, for myself, I would still prefer not to get too personal/ vulnerable, and not to use swearwords, (well at least in a blog). 🙂

  27. storycraftersx2

    Great post, timely for me. I wish I had brilliant advice for others, but there is the advice that I’m using as best as I can: Do it every day, even if only 3 sentences get written, something got done. Just do it, do it, do it. Take days off like normal people…haha, so hard for artists who work at home! And I ALWAYS wonder about writers process who composed the books I read…it’s the prolific ones I don’t like to think too much about though!

    • Damyanti

      Yes, I know the days you’re talking about– when we need to get that one sentence written. We all go through those. Wishing you many words, every single day!

    • Damyanti

      So true, right. The soldiers on the frontline, the doctors and nurses in Emergency never stop to think they can’t do it. They just do their best.

  28. misfit120

    I used to write my daily humor blog each and every day for the past five years. BUT…that said, it became increasingly difficult to find humor each and every day. Then I decided to just write when something struck me. Other than lightening. And it seems to work for me, My ideas come from daily life, news events, stupid stuff and I’m doing good with that. So, my advice is to write when the inspiration hits you. You’ll be more creative and get much more satisfaction out of it. If you read any of my blogs you’ll see how my mind works, demented as it may be, but also how I do not limit myself to writing about one thing in particular, but an array of nonsense. Try it.

    • Damyanti

      “So, my advice is to write when the inspiration hits you. You’ll be more creative and get much more satisfaction out of it.”

      I follow this for my blog, but don’t have this choice for my writing– deadlines are deadlines, unfortunately. But I get what you mean.

  29. wwannwrites

    If you are suffering from writers blick, or you feel like you’re stuck in a rut like I have these past couple of months, either take a small vacation and get away from it all, or simply take a walk and become one with your environment. When I listen to the chimes on the front porch, or just listen to the rain falling outside, it inspires me to write. Hope this helps, because just listening to your environment send you messages of inspiration is a true blessing from God, and it gets the creative juices flowing. I’m often surprised what I write, when I write from my heart and not my head. Happy writing and God bless.

    • Damyanti

      I’m often surprised what I write, when I write from my heart and not my head.

      Agree. I try always to write from my heart. Editing, unfortunately, almost always comes from the head.

      Thanks for stopping by, and the advice.

  30. shoreacres

    Words of advice for a writer in crisis? Stop with the self-absorption, stop obsessing over the process, stop thinking of yourself as a victim, and get interested enough in something outside of yourself that you can’t help but write about it.

    • Damyanti

      Excellent advice, Linda. The problem with writing a novel, though, is that familiarity breeds contempt.

      It’s truly just a marathon, must grit teeth and run, keep running through the cramps, exhaustion, fainting, till you hit the finish line. Love and interest in running be damned.

      • shoreacres

        I’ve been thinking about this all day, and here’s what I don’t understand (truly). Why do so many people who want to write — a novel or whatever — seem to have a relationship with their work that they never, ever would accept in any other sort of relationship? If a work is born of contempt, cramps, exhaustion, fainting, with no love or interest left by the end, it’s going to come through to the reader. Or so I think.

        • curtisbausse

          Ha, ha, that’s a great question! But it’s just when you get to the point where you can’t see the wood for the trees that you start to think you’re lost. And then if you take a break, write or do something else, it all looks clearer when you come back, and you can take some of those painful decisions, like axe a whole chapter you’ve spent weeks on. Aside from that, there are bound to be cyclical periods of doubt, I think very few writers can avoid that. Because the initial vision you had, which looked so perfect, somehow looks shoddy when it’s done – you can see all the cracks and bumps. But at some point you have to say to yourself that it’s finished, and just hope no one else notices them.

          • Damyanti

            Thankyou,Curtis.

            “and you can take some of those painful decisions, like axe a whole chapter you’ve spent weeks on.”

            Yep.

            I’ve thrown away 100k words, thrice, in two years. Written and had accepted for publication more than a dozen short stories in order to retain perspective, and also, some degree of sanity and self confidence.

            “Because the initial vision you had, which looked so perfect, somehow looks shoddy when it’s done – you can see all the cracks and bumps.”

            Oh it looks like all bumps now, all of it! None of the original story exists, it has grown into something else.

            I’m so glad you get exactly, with total accuracy, what I’m going through. Lovely to have universality in what I thought of as my personal struggle. Thankyou!

            I now feel better about all of the words of this novel someday ending up in nothing more than a pile of rubbish– maybe it would have taught me how to write 🙂

            • curtisbausse

              You’re welcome, Damyanti. I think you are indeed experiencing something common to a lot of writers. I know you’ll stick at it and get those bumps ironed out, and it’ll be good.

        • Damyanti

          Linda, I’m touched that the post made you think through the day. I’ve been dwelling on my response, too, hence the delay.

          Like Curtis says, doubt is a cyclical factor in writing. One day you’re paralyzed by lack of self-confidence, the next you’re ready to take on the world.

          I don’t know if I’m getting the metaphor right, because I’m not a parent, but it feels like parenthood might parallel the process of writing somewhat: no new parent can claim that the marathon feeding, burping, changing, lullabying and running on empty and no sleep does not lead to frustration, self-doubt and– I shudder to say, but have it on good authority– self-contempt, cramps, lack of love or interest, breakdowns.

          But there are those happy moments, too, the joy of watching your child trying and succeeding at various firsts: turning over, walking, talking, reading. And of course, when you can take pride in your child as a grown-up.

          Of course, children offer much more in terms of interaction and love than a book you’ve written can, but I think the metaphor carries. After the struggles of pregnancy, childbearing, child-rearing, a mother goes through the process over and over again, and is even able to look at her most physically pain-filled day, her child’s birthday, with happiness!

          Same with the novel. After it is written, the writer is able to (somewhat) forget the pain of writing a book enough to begin another one.

          Besides, be it books or children, creation would find a way, and pain fall by the wayside.

          I don’t know if this answers your question, Linda. From what I have right now, as a first-time novel writer and a non-parent, this is the best reason I can think of.