Each week we receive homework from our writing class tutor, usually writing tasks, even just to write. This is to help us create a discipline of writing, of prioritizing the time, of practising the art, of building it into our day.
Writing as a discipline has been acknowledged before. It is well recognized that to write a book, particularly one that reaches publishable standard, takes not just effort and time but a discipline. This discipline involves a commitment, a longing, a value attached to the writing itself.
Discipline comes from within. It comes from a sense of importance to what it is we are doing. A prioritizing of the work. A sense of duty perhaps. An ability to overcome the challenges of getting stuck, of being tired, of being overwhelmed or confused. A commitment to keep going, to not give up, to ride it out and hope to come out the other side.
Discipline also means accepting the feedback we receive along the way. Perhaps it also means seeking the feedback in the first place and seeing it as an important part of the process.
Discipline means looking towards an outcome but appreciating the process along the way. It requires us to set goals for ourselves, perhaps refining the goals along the way, but continuing to work towards the goal.
Discipline means overcoming the urge to rest or relax when our time could be better spent writing. Discipline also means knowing when to stop and rest when we've done enough. Knowing that we can come back to it tomorrow. It will be waiting for us.