There’s a thread at Codex called “When do I give up on writing?”, but it’s lame. It turns out to be all about not quitting. About dealing with adversity, and perseverance, and putting on your Big Girl Pants and giving it one more try.
One post says to stop writing if you have something else you’re more passionate about doing. Lord knows I do. I want to watch television and drink. It won’t be easy. I have to get a TV. It’s complicated. I think you can’t anymore just buy one and plug it in; there’s some little box thing you have to use if you don’t have cable. Probably I should just get cable anyway. Then you have to decide what to watch, but that’s easy because I remember about the drinking part from when I was younger. Jack Daniels and Bacardi were both pretty good. Tequila too, unless maybe Bacardi is tequila? I don’t think so. Oh yeah, and Korbel. Korbel was good. Anyway, start pumping those down and you can just turn on the TV and be good with whatever. There’s also this show called Breaking Bad which is a relatively new thing, only I think not so new that it isn’t already over. I could watch that. But I’m sure there are all kinds of shows that are still on that would be better than writing. I could buy a TV Guide, if they still make those. And if none of that works out, pretty soon it’ll be football season.
If you google “quit writing,” there’s really nothing. Good reasons to “quit” writing they talk about are things like giving the story time to settle, or taking time for friends and family. Bullshit. That’s not quitting at all!
Even Writing.com has that motto, “Keep writing!” Expressed, preferably, with lots of (((hugs))) or whatever. Just another imperative to control you, like “Show, don’t tell!” or “Cheer up!” or “Stop picking your nose!” You nod your head guiltily until no one’s looking.
No one needs to keep writing. There’s bazillions of good reasons to stop.
– Everybody writes. People who don’t ever read are all like, “Hey, guess what, I’m writing a book!”
– Writing is very, very, very, very, very hard work, and at the end of it you’re lucky to see a cent.
– Nobody really gives a shit what you have to say.
– Underpaid/unpaid slush readers really don’t need another manuscript of yours to wade through.
– Form rejections shit all over your self esteem.
– Those other writing people deserve a chance. Writing less does them a favor.
– Writing is old-school. Pretty soon we’ll all have holographic glasses.
– Books and stories have no value. Anyone who, for some reason, still likes to read can get all the reading material they want for free. Here in Madison, for example, we have Little Free Libraries. Not Little Free Gas Stations, or Little Free Jewelry Shops, or Little Free Pizza Parlors. Only books are so worthless.
– What kind of hobby serves no purpose but to inform you how badly you suck?
– The world is full of thousands of better and less selfish things.
I can’t do this anymore. I can’t stand it anymore. Any word I write is just another banshee shrieking through my brain.