It’s Monday morning, and I’m still in the beginnings of a novel, both points at which I find any distraction alluring. So I’ve pulled out one of my favorite quotes about persistence in creative work, by the remarkable Octavia Butler: “Writing is difficult. You do it all alone without encouragement and without any certainty that you’ll ever be published or paid or even that you’ll be able to finish the particular work you’ve begun. It isn’t easy to persist amid all that. Sometimes when I’m interviewed, the interviewer either compliments me on my ‘talent,’ my ‘gift,’ or asks me how I discovered it. I used to struggle to answer this politely, to explain that I didn’t believe much in writing talent. People who want to write either do it or they don’t. At last I began to say that my most important talent — or habit — was persistence. Without it, I would have given up writing long before I finished my first novel. It’s amazing what we can do if we simply refuse to give up.”
Just for today, I push aside distractions.