Monday, 18 July 2011

7 Lessons Writers Can Learn From Dogs

1.  Dogs have no sense of time and don't count the hours spent doing anything.  Writers need to stop worrying about how long the writing project is taking them and just get on with the writing.

2.  Dogs are persistent in the face of repeated failure, which is something writers have to learn.

3.  Dogs take advantage of their opportunities to sneak a bit of extra food.  Writers need to learn to take advantage of their opportunities too, especially if it's about sneaking a bit of extra time for writing.

4. Dogs enjoy working and never grumble about it.  Writers, take the hint.

5.  Dogs are intuitive and sensitive to the feelings of others around them.  They pay attention to body language and subtext.  A good writer writes about what's under the surface, not just the obvious stuff.

6.  Dogs are usually friendly, but will defend themselves when attacked.  Writers have to learn when to defend themselves but should remember that a dog that growls and snarls at everyone is a pain in the neck.

7.  Dogs like to leave their mark at every lamp post.  Using social media is the writerly equivalent. 

My thanks to my much loved Border Collie, Tan - gone but not forgotten - for being the inspiration and to this dog:  a lesson in persistence for us all.  May your rock too end up on the grass.


WriteRetreat said...

Well done for pointing out all the wonderful help dogs (unknowingly) give us, not just as writers, but in all aspects of our lives.
I have two lively spaniels whose energy and exuberance keep me going and always make me smile.
Also, unlike cats, dogs rarely jump on the keyboard and sleep on carefully printed out pages!

Sarah Duncan said...

Good point! Cats and keyboards do not go together. Dogs are good for writers because it's a sedentary business, and you have to take the dog for a walk - I've put on a stone since Tan died.