Writing Tips from E.B. White: Write Now!
“A writer who waits for ideal conditions
under which to work will die
without putting a word to paper.”
– E. B. White
What are your ideal writing conditions? Is it quiet or are there stimulating background noises? Are you alone, curled up in a chair with a pen and notebook, or are you in a bustling café, gleaning inspiration from fellow patrons and a tasty meal or cup of coffee? Are you already rich and successful with all the time in the world to dedicate to your craft or are you a starving artist, hungry to get that first publication credit, desperate to complete that first novel?
Inadequate conditions are one of the many excuses that would-be writers use to explain why they’re not getting any writing done. Their schedules are too full, their bank accounts too empty. They’re too tired or not inspired. They haven’t found the perfect story idea. They don’t have a comfortable chair or there’s too much noise–too many distractions.
Every excuse–every reason not to write–is just that: a distraction. Writing is the cheapest and most accessible craft in the world. All you need to get started is a pen and notebook. If you have a fancy computer and state-of-the-art software, all the better, but owning these tools is not essential. Anyone can rent computer time in a local library (Ray Bradbury rented typewriters when he first started his writing career).
Ideal conditions may happen someday. Your personal responsibilities will dwindle. You’ll have a spare room you can convert into your own personal writing studio. You’ll have spare cash you can spend on tools, equipment, and weekly trips to a quaint café. In the meantime, why let all these excuses stop you from doing what you love?
If you really want to write…if you truly want to become an author, you won’t let anything get in your way, least of all, imperfect conditions.