Labor Day for Writers

September 6, 2010 at 2:53 pm (Holidays and Special Events Posts)

Happy Labor Day Folks!

Maybe some of you are enjoying a nice palooza event  with the kids, soaking up the last rays of the summer sun and tasting blueberry snowcones on your tongue, picking off the flecks of powdered sugar from your pants; thanks to a funnel cake…

or maybe you are a writer.

Maybe you are still bleeding over your keyboard and trying “unsuccessfully” to overcome your writer’s block, or maybe your fingers are flying over the keys because your muse has inspired your mojo and it is flowing freely; You just can’t take a break for fear of breaking this magical moment. Nah, that’s not you or you wouldn’t be reading this.

Seriously though, do readers get a labor day? Intellectual work is still laborious work. Our fingers cramp, our backs hurt from too many hours in the office chair (or on the floor), our bodies get exhausted. But do we take the time to have a vacation day? Do we, writers, actually stop or do we continue to push ourselves past the point of no return? Without us, what would other people read on their labor day vacation? Without us, progress of the written word would be halted. We are a needed group.

    We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
    For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
    Shall be my brother;  – Shakespeare

And we sure do shed our blood for the goof of the world. Without us, literature would cease, without us prose would not exist. We are story-tellers, we are informers, we are history recorders, and we bleed over our work. We pour all that we are into our work, if we don’t then we are nothing. Anais Nin was not lying when she said:

“If you do not breathe through writing, if you do not cry out in writing, or sing in writing, then don’t write, because our culture has no use for it.”

Ernest Hemingway knows what I am talking about, or maybe I know what he meant when he said:

“There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”

So, while others enjoy the last days of summer, we happy few will dig into the imaginations we live in and bleed onto the pages until something worth reading pops out. We will continue to labor, sometimes in vain, but labor nonetheless, and on Labor Day when hard work is honored, we will work all the harder. And remember that even though we are alone in our works, we are together in the world.



  1. Amber Hunter said,

    I just have to share my Labor Day with you – it was so insane.

    Friday morning, up at 7:30-ish to get the kids to school. Then I worked straight through with no sleep until 9:30pm on Saturday for an event my husband and I were hosting this weekend. Then I slept in the truck, woke up long enough to crawl into bed and got up Sunday to start writing for the 3 Day Novel Contest. I was still exhausted, so most of that day was wasted at the keyboard… nodding off. Monday I had my first real chance to bang away at my novel – and I kept at it until 11:50pm, when I realized there was no way I was going from 30-something pages to finished in 10 minutes.

    It’s a great start though – and no sleep for me this week until my first draft is done! OK… maybe a little sleep since I seem to work better on a normal schedule.

    • laughlovewrite said,

      Oh wow, thanks for sharing. Keep us posted on the contest, I almost took part myself. Hope you get some sleep time soon.

  2. Amber Hunter said,

    The contest is done and my entry as-yet unfinished. I won’t submit it for judging.

    I am going to keep working on it, though. I learned so much by participating that I don’t regret blowing the $50.00 on the entry fee even a little bit, and have the basis for a great story going as a result of my efforts. If you haven’t tried it yet – block out Labor Day Weekend in 2011 and plan on it.

    • laughlovewrite said,

      I will definitely plan on it for next year. I also wanted to try NaNoWriMo, but I will see how it goes.

      I am glad to hear you have the beginning of a great novel, that’s wha it is all about.

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