Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Writing Priority

From the LDS Storymakers: Writing Secrets, A Comprehensive Guide to Writing Fiction & Nonfiction in the LDS Market, page 121, and with Tristi Pinkston's permission, I have copied a fun test for you to take.

"Think about this: no matter how busy your day gets, you make time to go to the bathroom, right?

"But I can't help it!" I hear you say. "I have to go to the bathroom!"

Yes, exactly my point; and serious writers have to write.

. . .

1. Would you get more satisfaction out of writing four pages of the story that's been running around in your head for months, or watching television?

2. Are you able to ignore the telephone when it rings while you're busy with something that's important to you? (Like writing?)

3. If you had planned an afternoon of writing, and you got a phone call in the morning asking you to come to the school and help with an activity, would you be able to say, "No, I'm sorry, I'll be working"?

4. Would you rather write than browse through a magazine?

5. Do you carry on long phone conversations? Would you be willing to cut your phone time if it meant finding time to write?

6. Have you ever gotten so caught up in writing that you forget to eat?

7. Would you rather write than watch a video/DVD?

8. Do you carry paper with you wherever you go? (Okay, we'll draw the line at taking it into the swimming pool when you swim your laps.)

9. Are you willing to invest time to learn how to organize your things (this means getting id of whatever you don't need)?

10. Can you identify necessary tasks that you could do more efficiently? (For example, instead of cutting up a chicken and frying a few pieces at a time, couldn't you just toss the whole darn bird onto a pan and back it? It's healthier for you, too.)

11. Are you willing to insist that your family or those you live with share household, hard, and car maintenance responsibilities?

12. Do you take showers or baths for a longer time than it actually takes you to get clean?

13. If you computer is down, do you tell yourself there's no way you can write?

14. Do you regularly go window shopping or brows your way through the mall?

15. Do you find yourself running to the store several times a week for things you forgot?

16. If you're the first to wake up, of your own accord (crying babies and alarm clocks don't count), would you rather get up and write in the quiet moments before anyone else wakes up, or would your rather give in to the alluring Mattress Monster for a few more moments of unconsciousness?

Okay, now tally up your answers. Give yourself one point for every "yes" you answered on the first 11 questions, one point for every "no" from 12-15. (I'll give you 16 for free.)

If you have 10-15 points, you're a writer, and your goals are well within reach. Just validate your writer status.

If you have 5-10 points, you have potential. You need to look at the places that are stealing your time and see if you're willing to do some rearranging.

If you have fewer than 5 points, well, then writing may just stay a pleasant daydream, unless you really want to shift gears and rev up your writing engine.

. . ."


  1. Ha ha! Great quiz!

    6. There was one time I even forgot to feed the kids. Don't send out child protective services - it only happened once!

    12. During the cool weather season I never shave my legs. I figure this gives me an extra hour a week that I can spend on writing.

    14. If I'm at the mall I'm looking at people and figuring out how I'd describe them in a sentence or two. Sometimes I even jot it down (see #8).

    15. If I forgot something at the store, we do without.

    16. I've found that if I get up and start writing I can't stop to make breakfast and get kids off to school. Instead, I get up and get my work done so I can write later.

  2. I scored a 13!

    I have to do everything before I start writing or I'll grow horns and a tail! LOL

  3. I got 11 points by the skin of my teeth. I definately need to recommit myself to writing!



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