Feb 24

Quitting Time!

It’s a February thing, right? Something in the air that makes writers want to throw down their work, fold their arms, pout their lip, and declare “that’s it, I give up!”

Forums, FB, and Twitter seem to be full of people announcing their intentions to quit writing at the moment:

“It’s too hard, what’s the point? Won’t somebody please tell me what a good writer I am and convince me to stay.”


Good riddance.

(Here’s where this post might get a little controversial)

I don’t want to take time away from my writing to convince you to carry on. Not because I’m a heartless bastard that wants rid of the competition (the heartless thing is just a coincidence), rather because you don’t really want to quit.

Maybe I’m wrong, more often than not I am, but more than likely you’re having a bad time of it, and you simply want some reassurance. If you wanted to quit, you wouldn’t scramble about the Internet telling people. And if you did, you’d do it once and not keep banging on about it whenever anyone tried to help. And that’s the part I don’t like, it smacks of people saying “oh, I’m sooo ugly” just so everyone in their clique screams “no, no, no – you’re the most beautiful creature to ever grace God’s green earth!”

Let’s look at some of the common complaints and see if we can’t figure the reason behind this mass evacuation.

Too time consuming – I know, right! Sometimes when I’m writing a novel I get so wound up I can’t knock out a perfect draft before breakfast. Maybe I should take up Sudoku instead? I hear you can knock ten or twelve of those bad boys out in a day…talk about productive!

Little reward – I’m still waiting for my ticker tape parade for that last short story I wrote but some dimwit obviously forgot to order the…erm…ticker tape. To this day I’m still amazed there’s no rapturous applause whenever I complete a particularly good sentence.

It’s hard – I’ve heard a rumour that some authors write two or three books before publishers fling buckets of money at them! What’s this fizzy bullshit?! I wasn’t told there would be work involved. Blood, sweat, and tears can kiss my naturally talented arse!

What’s the point? – Stupid careers, with their stupid pointlessness-isms. Money, recognition, a sense of accomplishment…what’s the point if we’re all going to die anyway? I feel like I should throw a woe or two in here, but I’m worm food anyway so why bother?

My god…I was wrong. Writing is hard, and pointless, and there’s at least a 5% chance I won’t end up rich as Bill Gates and surrounding by scantily clad women.

Woe is me! What’s the point!

I give up.

*drops pen*



  1. Anthony Cowin

    The very few times I thought I wanted to quit I got an email, a comment or invitation to submit out of the blue. So if I ever feel like that now I always remind myself what I could have missed if I’d have thrown a wet towel into a canvas ring.

    1. Steven Chapman

      Dude, if you’re getting invitations to submit you can’t ever think about quitting! I’ve never had an invite…maybe it’s my naturally talented arse that scares people off?

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