Writers understand

I hadn’t seen my friend Tina in probably a year. But after we hugged hello late Friday night, practically the first words out of my mouth were, “At some point before midnight, I need to write for 15 minutes.”

She said, “Absolutely! I have a poem to edit.”

And we sat in her living room on our respective laptops, putting off our gabfest until we’d done our work.

Did she mind? Not one bit. She’s a writer, too.

Writers understand.

I’ve been around plenty of people who didn’t. Every writer has at least one story about a friend or family member who wondered when they’d get a “real job.” And if they don’t think it’s real work, then they’re not going to respect your need to write instead of watching a TV show, or going to the 4th of July picnic. Or using every available moment to catch up with a dear old friend on a Friday night.

Tina and I caught up plenty that night. We pulled out our knitting and laughed and talked for hours. But first I wrote and Tina edited. We honored our commitment to ourselves, recognizing that we couldn’t be fully present to each other until we did.

They say you’re the sum of the five people you spend the most time with. If at least one of your five isn’t a writer, you’re missing out. We know from commitment. And we’re damn funny, too.

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