Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Writing Excuses

Most of the time we writers have a million excuses about not finding time to write. I thought it was time to reverse that and come up with some ways to use writing AS an excuse. Here are my top excuses. I hope you'll get creative and post some of yours!

  1. Invited to your ex-sister-in-law's brother's two year old daughter's birthday party at Chuck E Cheese?  "I'm sorry I can't come but I'm waiting for an important call from my agent/editor/publisher."
      
  2. When being nagged by a spouse or S/O reply with, "I'm sorry, did you say something? My characters were having a fight and I couldn't hear a thing."
     
  3. Getting too many phone calls? Change your voice-mail message to something witty like, "I'm sorry I can't take your call. I'm in eastern BFE (your choice of location) doing research for my next book. Leave a message at the beep."
     
  4. Someone mention the dust bunnies? Easy! "Dust bunnies? Oh my no, those are the fairy beds. If I clean them up they'll create all kinds of chaos!"
     
  5. Class reunion? Family gathering? No problem. "I'd love to come but my computer just ate my last three chapters, just as the hero told me he needs me....SERIOUSLY needs me."

14 comments:

  1. I love this concept, Donna. Unfortunately my circle of friends know that I'm not (yet) a novelist and working this as a non-fic writer seems to lose some of its punch. The research phone message would work but "I'm sorry, Dear, did you say something? The pterodactyls I'm studying were screaming so loudly I didn't hear you." will earn me nothing but a "get real" look.

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  2. LOVE this Donna---I use this all the time! Inlaws boring bday party? oops, got a deadline. Camping trip? sorry, have to get edits back to critique partner as she's in the middle of a nervous breakdown. Need a school trip chaperone? Sorry, my characters need me to tell them what to do!

    And I think I will change my outgoing voice message to this!

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  3. lol - these are great! I'll be sure to use some of them!

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  4. Love your creative excuses. Might consider changing my outgoing voice message.

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  5. i know--i find myself hurrying people off the phone these days--but hey i couldn't talk if i was at work--right

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  6. I write at work (I work the overnights at a Super 8) and I so want to tell those pesky guests who come down wanting something (like an extra pillow or to check out) to leave me alone because my heroine is in the middle of kicking the bad guy's butt.

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  7. You bet your bippy, I'm going to use ALL of these. I hate requests for any kind of social interaction with real, live, breathing humans. Thank you, Donna, and thank you, Stephen, for calling my attention to this excellent post.

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  8. If you're a mystery writer and want to leave something truly catchy on your answering machine--"I can't take your call right now because I'm in the middle of killing someone. Please leave a message at the scream."

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  9. Oh I so love #3. I am so going to use that idea. As to family gatherings, I have 2 coming up.

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  10. Thanks everyone for stopping by, reading and commenting. I'm glad you enjoyed the article...it was fun coming up with these. Use or abuse! ;-)

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  11. Been using my characters for years, but these are even better than: "Ty just found out Summer almost died in a desert outpost, now he has to figure out how to apologize to her for being a jerk"
    And it's LOTS better than trying to blame the dogs "Sorry I can't come, Gwyn just ripped a hole in the leather couch and I need to duct tape it so she won't get her leg caught" brings up all the "why in the world do you have all those dogs?" questions.
    LOVE this post

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  12. Monica this was fun and creative. Yep, I could use some of these.

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  13. I use the voices in my head, "They're talking too loud to hear," my offenders, co-workers and bosses. Okay, everyone freaks when I say the voices are yelling again. They just don't know it's my characters talking again.

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  14. Just shows you that the writer's fantasy world is more interesting and important than reality.
    Sally Carpenter

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