Something To Do …

This season of Thanksgiving calls to mind a quote by the 18th-century Scottish writer Alexander Chalmers:

“The three grand essentials of happiness are something to do, someone to love, and something to hope for.”

For those of us who write, we can be grateful that the “something to do” part of that is pretty well covered.

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Every now and then, a friend will stop by our home and venture into my office. They’re usually surprised at what they find there. Books are standing or lying on bookshelves in some kind of semi-organized chaos, and the three-door closet is covered with Post-it notes I’m using to plot my next book.

The desk is a riot of papers, laptops, to-do lists, notes, and more books. Whiteboards lean against walls that are covered with pictures and papers, and the back of the office door has more lists taped to it.

Invariably, someone will ask, “How do you get everything done?” The answer is simple: I don’t.

One of life’s greatest blessings is, I think, to have more to do than one can possibly get done. I’m happy to tell the story I’m working on as well as I can, aware that there are many more in the future. I’m like a kid in a magnificent toy store, captivated by the puzzle I’m trying to put together and excited by the endless supply of new and shiny artifacts yet to be tackled. I am so grateful, and I’m reminded of another wonderful and timely quote, this one by a 13th-century theologian:

If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is thank you, it will be enough.” –Meister Eckhart.

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So, TKZers: Happy Thanksgiving and thank you for all the wisdom shared here over the past year!

Do you have more to do than you can ever accomplish? What things in your writing life are you grateful for?

I’ll be traveling today, but I’ll check in whenever I can to respond to comments.

* * *


Private pilot Cassie Deakin has something to do: find the culprits who assaulted her beloved uncle. But can she accomplish her mission before she becomes the next victim?  Buy it here.

This entry was posted in #amwriting, #writers, #writerslife, gratitude, Writing and tagged , , by Kay DiBianca. Bookmark the permalink.

About Kay DiBianca

Kay DiBianca is a former software developer and IT manager who retired to a life of mystery. She’s the award-winning author of The Watch Series of cozy mysteries. Her latest book, "Lacey's Star: A Lady Pilot-in-Command Novel," was released in October 2023. Kay is currently working on the first book in a middle-grade mystery series, "The Reen and Joanie Detective Agency." She's decided three series may be enough to keep her busy for a while. Connect with Kay on her website at

30 thoughts on “Something To Do …

  1. 🆀Do you have more to do than you can ever accomplish?
    🅰Fer sure. I plan 6 more Guardienne papers for ResearchGate, a popsci version of the concept, and a 110 page KDP book. I want to back-adapt my thriller to film and finish three more partial filmscripts. I have three more novels about 75% done, and I’m hoping to be named US Ambassador to Gondwanaland.
    🆀What things in your writing life are you grateful for?
    🅰Definitely KillZone, JSB, and all the writers here. KillZone usually starts or ends my day, or both. I’m also grateful for my Tuesday workshop at the library.

  2. “One of life’s greatest blessings is, I think, to have more to do than one can possibly get done.”

    That really resonates with me. It’s easy to get negative when you think about all the creative things you want to do but don’t have time for. I probably have about 20 novel ideas I’d like to develop plus a few non-fiction; then there’s painting, drawing, leather work, learning bluegrass banjo etc etc.

    Sure, I may accomplish only a small fraction of those things, but then I think about how dull life would be without a creative outlet. Yuck! I’m very thankful for the natural curiosity that causes me to write and to do other creative things as I can. Each one brings its own form of joy to life.

  3. Oh yeah, I have more story ideas/concepts than I’ll ever get to in this lifetime. So I identify with Isaac Asimov who, when asked what he would do if he knew he had only 6 months to live, said, “Type faster.”

    I’m thankful for a wife who understands me, to the extent that is possible.

  4. Thanks for those two quotes, Kay. Full of truth and wisdom.

    In the unlikely event I ever finish drafting, editing, and catching up, there’s always the dreaded marketing that never ends, or organizing files, or uploading to Ingram, or creating boxed sets, or the giant stack of books to read, etc.

    I’m grateful for the love, encouragement, and support of more readers and writing colleagues than I can count.

    Kay, I esp. appreciate you for alerting me last night with the good news that my thriller Deep Fake Double Down is a finalist for the BookLife Prize.

    Safe travels and have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your family!

  5. There’s always more to do, even if it’s “only” more books than one could ever read. Trying new things is what keeps my life interesting. It’s how I got into this writing gig, after all.
    In my writing life, I’m thankful for the encouragement of others.

  6. Happy Thanksgiving, Kay!

    Yes, like many others here, I have more ideas than I will ever be able to develop and write into stories. I’m manic, and I love it.

    I’m especially thankful for a wife who understands me, allows me to pursue my crazy ideas, fills in the gaps with the necessities of life while I’m writing or inventing, and pretends to be interested when I include her in my brainstorming. I am truly blessed.

    Thanks for your wonderful posts here at TKZ, and safe travels today!

    • Happy Thanksgiving to you, Steve. You have quite an assortment of things to be thankful for, from making the gorgeous pens to writing fantasy novels. I think you’ll be busy for a long time!

  7. Happy Thanksgiving, Kay, and safe travels!

    I’m blessed, like you and many others here, to have more ideas and projects than I can complete, even if I live to be a 100. It really does feel like being a kid in a candy store. Not only do I have a number of ideas, I know I have many more waiting in the wings in my imagination to come forth. I also know that I will never learn it all, when it comes to writing–there’s always something else to learn and practice.

    I’m grateful for my loving and supportive wife, who is one of my beta readers and, in a pinch, one of my copy editors. I’m grateful for all my writing friends and especially the wonderful, supportive TKZ community where I’m also blessed to call you and many others friends.

  8. Like other commenters, I have a never-ending to-do list with more story ideas than I could write in a lifetime. Better than none, I suppose. 😉

    Wishing you and yours a special Thanksgiving, Kay!

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