Friday, April 6, 2012

F: Four Letter Word

My husband is a painter. You won't find his masterpieces displayed in a museum but rather on the walls of hundreds of homes and businesses.  He can trim a line between a ceiling and wall with a free hand brush without the use of any painter's tape or a straight edge.  You'll never find a drip on a floor or carpet. He taught all my sons to paint as they grew up. Their summer job was the envy of their friends.  Teenage sons and their father working together can be a volatile mix but most of the time they not only got along and grew closer, they also had fun.  Part of that fun was the little sayings my husband would hand out in half joking and half serious manner when the situation was right.  One of his favorites is now used by my oldest son when he coaches and teaches.

"Work is a four-letter word we use seven days per week."  I don't know who said that first but I'm rather sure my husband didn't come up with it on his own.  That little saying gets thrown around our house a few times per week, usually when someone complains about how much they have to do in so little time.

Most writers don't earn financial security from the profits of their writing.  There is usually some other bill-paying job to put their food on the table and keep the rain off our heads.  Writing time is stolen, borrowed and eked out from sleep time, relaxation time and perhaps even meal time.  Weekends can sometimes provide a chunk of time for writers to apply their talents to their love of the word.  And then we work.

I bet when you read the title of this blog post, you thought it would be about using curse words in your writing.  I'm not getting into to that except to mention the words some of us use when our writing isn't going as we'd like or we have a disappointment in our career.  Instead of using a word like s*#t or h#*l, we should use the four letter word, work.  As in work harder.  Work longer. Work seven days per week.

Any little sayings your family likes to throw around? Do you face disappointments or set backs by working harder?


  1. Very inspiring ! Looking forward to reading the rest of your posts.

  2. We do have a saying in our house, but it's not fit to post.

    Happy AtoZing, Susan. Keep up the great work, and boogie boogie.

  3. We have a lot of sayings, but they probably wouldn't make sense to anyone but us :-)

  4. I agree putting in the extra bit of effort will help get out of the funk of disappointment :)

    Fellow A-Z bloggy buddy
    Mithril Wisdom

  5. Hello! Interesting post. Thanks for stopping by to check out my letter E post.


  6. Painting is an awesome skill!
    As a mom of five I say things like, "Pans are dishes too!!"...

    God bless you guys!

  7. I find myself saying 'Use your words' to my son a lot... he's not a toddler, as you'd imagine, he's 12 and just spends most of his time grunting in frustration that we don't understand him.

  8. Great post! My mother always said, "KISS"...Keep It Simple, Stupid--good advice for a writer.

  9. I finally learned how to paint with no tape. The secret is a really expensive brush and a Jedi mindset.

  10. I love that quote! I easily work seven days a week. Though my job is technically M-F, my life isn't, lol. Thanks! Shannon

  11. My family says "it is what it is." We understand that while we dont always like what it thrown at us, we must deal with it and move on. Some things we can control and some we can not. Worry about what you can change and let the things you cant work their course.
    Thanks for the inspiring post.

  12. my husband paints well---and once i talked him into painting a mural on my boys bedroom wall--it was great

  13. Our family motto is Work and Play and Pray Everyday. Work is just part of life.

    We use the same idea in comedy. There are easy jokes (dirty) and then there are jokes that take more of your brain to come up with. Shock comedy is easy. Anyone can say things you shouldn't say.

  14. Awesome post! Very inspiring. This week I have been working very hard on my manuscript and it is coming along so well!

    Konstanz Silverbow
    A to Z Co-host

  15. My husband has always worked hard and I think his high standards have been hard for my kids to live up to. On the plus side they have grown up seeing a hard working man which has got to be good.
    Now following and would love it if you come visit me over at my blog in the uk

  16. When you work, you earn the right to play!

  17. First, I need to hire your husband to finish painting around the trim work in my house. I've got through rolls and rolls of tape.

    Second, what a great saying to teach your kids.

    Blog #atozchallenge

  18. I try to get back to work after setbacks. Can be hard to find the motivation, but there's really no excuse not to!

  19. I might have to add some of your sayings to our family play book. Aren't families great?

  20. That's a good saying! And so very appropriate no matter what the job :)

    One of my dad's sayings was 'no one has more fun than us crazy people!' :)

  21. well, isn't that the truth...I teach so I can write and then yes, the time is stolen and borrowed from family and whatnot! But it's a dream so in order to keep the dream alive it is well worth it! Great post!

  22. Great saying! And a spot on post!

    There were many sayings in my house growing up. I grew up with my grandmother, parents and brother in one house. My grandmother lived through the Great Depression and it left it's mark on her and therefore indirectly on me. So the saying that I heard most often was:

    Use it up,
    Wear it out,
    Make it do,
    Or do without.

  23. I was going to write about no "F" words today! LOL! Seriously, I read so many books that overuse it. Get a thesaurus, you know? Or use "work" instead. Great idea!

  24. Hello Nancy: i agree wholeheatedly! Some four letter words have a bad rep but work should never be one of them! Good blog:). I also have a Four Letter Word blog for my F day. . Cheers, Sylvie