The Disciplined Writer

I’ve found it important to be disciplined in my writing.  I have schedules I follow, goals I strive for, tasks I add to my To-Do list.

But we all know life sometimes gets in the way.

That’s when you find out if you are truly disciplined.

I’m at a new location today — you know, one of those family get together things.  New locations can seriously throw off well-planned writing routines.

Normally I begin my day with a walk around the neighborhood.  Even though it’s pushing the 90’s each day in Missoula, the walk is important.  I use it to pray, to think, to plan for the day.

But today I find myself on Balboa Island (just next to Newport Beach, California).  I know what you’re thinking.  How can he possible adjust to such a dramatic change?  Will his commitment to the disciplined lifestyle falter? It’s during those hard times you find out what you’re made of.  Sure the temperatures are around 70 and the cool breeze off the ocean feels wonderful.  The path around the island borders cute little houses on one side and the bay with hundreds of boats moored on the other.  But it’s not my neighborhood.  No concrete sidewalks.  But I don’t use that as an excuse.  I manage to get in a morning walk, hand-in-hand with my wife.  Why?  Because I’m disciplined.  I’m willing to pay the price.  I’m a pro.

If only that were the extent of the challenges.  There’s more.

One of my best writing spots at home is the coffee shop at the local Barnes & Noble store.  It’s a guaranteed good writing location for me.  But there is no Barnes & Noble store on Balboa Island.  I know.  I know.  You probably thought such primitive places didn’t exist in this day and age.  But you won’t hear me complain.  I’m a disciplined writer.  I can’t let the difficulties of life keep me from my task.  Grabbing my little computer, I head to the Starbucks in the cute downtown section of the island.  I settle in with a hot chocolate and a toasted multigrain bagel and write.  I know you’re impressed.  How could anyone succeed in such conditions.  If you’re serious about your writing, you have to be willing to pay the price, and I’m willing because I’m a pro.

Even if life throws you hardships such as having to spend a couple of days on Balboa Island, if you’re a pro, you’ll roll with the punches and survive.

Hope you have a great day.

I plan to.

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6 comments on “The Disciplined Writer
  1. Your discipline during these difficult days astounds me:-). Enjoy your time my friend.

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    • Sometimes I’m astounded too but probably for different reasons. I did have a great time with my family. Joy said she misses hearing you preach so I’ll pass along the link to your website.

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  2. Beth says:

    70 degrees and ocean breezes and hot cocoa and walks with the spouse you love and writing? sounds so amazing! can’t wait to hear more stories when you get back. Eddy misses you but is being such a good boy.

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  3. Laura says:

    I’m on holiday at the moment and although I’m trying not to be too disciplined – I am on holiday, after all – I’m still getting some writing in. Taking a morning walk really does help. Keep up the good work, despite the ‘difficult’ circumstances!
    – Laura

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