Bribing Myself to the Page

By Naomi Kinsman

To be honest, I haven't much felt like writing recently. My brain feels like a sponge that someone used to wash off an ATV after a day in the mud, which was subsequently jumped on by a flock of kids while they played in the sprinkler, and then wrung out half-heartedly and left to dry in the sun.

I could list all sorts of reasons for this feeling, but none of them would be very interesting. Deadlines and piles of work and end-of-school year madness, and on and on. But I've learned that when I've got that used-up feeling, writing is the only solution. Word by word by word, I find my way back to energy and enthusiasm.

I know this. I know writing is the answer. And still, I find it difficult to sit down, to tap into those words and put them, one after another, onto the page. So I bribe myself.

I tell myself that if I write a page, then I can walk to the corner coffee shop and pick up a latte. I promise myself that if I write a chapter, I can take out my colored pencils and sketch for a while. And after a few stuttering starts, words begin flowing again. They come slowly, but I feel my energy flickering beneath the surface, becoming more lively with each word. Some morning, very soon, I won't need to bribe myself anymore. I'll bound out of bed, down the stairs to my desk. And until I do, I'll keep all of my promises to myself.

Do you think that's a page? Hard to tell on a blog post. Close enough, I say. Time for that latte!


  1. Sometimes I find it hard to get back into my writing, especially when life is busy and my writing time gets squeezed into nothing. But you're right...the best solution is just to start writing again, and it leads to more.

  2. Enjoy your latte! And man...I thought you were inside my head on the writing "thing".

  3. I love this entry! Enjoy your rewards. :)


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