The other day I engaged in the grim task of cleaning out my e-mail inbox. It had become loaded with messages, some of which were over seven years old. My long-suffering Eudora program gave me the dire warning to clean this crap out or it would quit on me.
Of course, I couldn’t help opening up messages and making totally sure I wasn’t throwing away anything important. I began reading an e-mail chain from a long-defunct writer’s group. In those days we’d start the week with a friendly e-mail to members telling them about our progress or frustrations or breakthroughs. As I was reading them, I noticed something else: one of the members was either
a) continually chronicling reasons why they couldn’t write anything that week
b) subtly attacking members who did make progress or breakthroughs
I’m really impatient with those sorts of behaviors. I guess you’d call me a bee-yotch when it comes to my writing time, but I don’t let much derail me from my appointment with my muse. I think I might have even written a few replies saying, “wtf, tell your spouse he can make his own tomato soup for lunch. The instructions are on the can. This is YOUR time.” She wrote back that she felt it was her obligation to make sure everyone in her family was happy and contented before she felt she could take time away from their needs for her own selfish pursuits.
Much later (after I left the group) I learned from another member how guilty Perfect Spouse made her feel if she didn’t get up at the crack of dawn to make her kids hot oatmeal with a drizzled honey smiley-face and instead chose to write until the last possible second. She also reported that PS tried to derail her progress by calling into question the plot, dialogue, research choices, you name it, on her WIP.