Thursday, March 11, 2010

5 Things Writers Can Learn From Cats

This is my cat, Fawkes (named after the phoenix from Harry Potter (yes, I know I'm a huge geek)).
In this picture, he's on my lap indulging in what looks like an amazing back nap.


What does this have to do with writing you ask?


I'm so glad you asked! :)


Here are 5 Things Writers Can Learn From Their Cats:


1) Enjoy the journey. Fawkes will get incredibly excited when I wave one of his toys around, but when I actually toss it to him, he sniffs it for two seconds, and sits on it. Yeah. For him, it's all about the anticipation. Lesson: Don't get so focused on your end goals, that you forget to enjoy yourself along the way!
2) Don't get your back up over the small stuff. My cat will sit patiently on the couch as my husband and I blare heavy metal, play Rock Band, or sodder things in his near vacinity. He's relaxed about the small things that would spook many a lesser creature. Lesson: Chill out! Let go of the small annoyances and save your anxiety for when it really matters (Ex: lightning storms, or when someone turns the vacuum on.)
3) Waiting is an opportunity. When he's in between dinner time and when I turn on the sink for him to drink from (I'm cat whipped), he doesn't get restless or bitch and moan about how long everything takes. What does he do? Something awesome! He chases twist ties, bites things he shouldn't be biting, and, of course, naps. Sweet, sweet naps. Lesson: When the waiting seems endless, treat it as an opportunity and spend time on the things you enjoy!
4) Be an astute observer. Have you ever noticed how cats will often sit up at full attention and stare at something for minutes on end? And then eventually you realize it's a dust mite, or a single dot of paper on the floor? Lesson: As writers, we can't miss the opportunities to be observers of life. We are the ones who take the seemingly insignificant and make it beautiful.
5) Napping is mandatory. Enough said. Lesson: Seriously. We all need to take time for ourselves. Cut yourself some slack once in a while and take some time to relax :).
What do you think? Are there any lessons I missed?

14 comments:

Ann Elle Altman said...

Man, boy do I need a cat or what!

I love cats and I agree that those things are wonderful about cats. I love number 5...so good night.

ann

Dawn Embers said...

Great post. I love cats and find a number of authors do as well. When I was at the Sirens conference many of us, and the keynote authors, talked a great deal about our cats. That included Tamora Pierce.

That orange-ish cat reminds me of ours, named Forest. (Yes, stepdad named him after Forest Gump. And he's not the brightest cat.)

annie-jean said...

Remember that cats just are...we can learn a lot from that. Instead of focusing on our many roles including that of writer we need to learn to just "be," for in "be-ing" we find the key to what we are. (Sometimes that includes being darned good writers among other things.)

Candyland said...

What lesson should one take away from one cat's constant private region bathing?

Scott said...

Great post and you're not a geek. : )

whitneyhenderson said...

I agree entirely. Napping is SO crucial. Excellent points all, really. Cats are awesome.

And I have one named Dobby. :)

Nisa said...

Okay, I'm a huge cat lover and that was just a cute, fun post! Not to mention right on the money. Fawkes is beautiful!

Debra Harris-Johnson said...

Sometimes we put such stock in the "future or tomorrow" we miss all the wonderous events happening in the day. Yesterday is gone, tomorrow hasn't come all we have is the present.

Ann said...

Great points. You have one smart cat.

Abby Annis said...

What a great list! Good things to remember. :)

Barbara Scully said...

Love this post. Cats are amazing! I have four and agree with all your points. I can add another. Keep a keen eye out. I read a survey (yep- I am big saddo) recently about cats which said that after sleeping, domestic cats spend most time awake, looking out windows. I know ours do. If they could talk I bet they would have all kinds of gossip about the neighbours!!!!!!

微笑每一天 said...

wonderful...................................................

Yunaleska said...

These lessons are very true! I shall take them on board a bit more.

Shaun Hutchinson said...

I agree wholeheartedly with the napping (and everything else but especially the napping).