A culture of laziness exists in one of my middle school classes. I talk about personal goals, achievement, and pride, but laziness wins. Every. Day. It wins because it’s what the class knows. It wins because not one student stands in opposition. All are content with mediocrity.

Thinking back to middle school, I can remember existing within a similar culture of laziness, but that is not my culture today. I belong to the culture of The Driven. We are knowledge-seeking, goal-setting doers.

My shift occurred early in high school when, by luck of the schedule, I found myself set apart from The Lazy and surrounded by The Driven. The influence of those around me changed my very identity. It changed not only my productivity, but the way I thought about myself.

Likewise, as a writer, I find that I am more productive when I immerse myself in the culture of writers. It sounds so obvious, and yet I often forget how important it is. Writing is a lonesome task. Maintaining a sense of culture and community is a challenge. Personal contact with like-minded people is best, but not always attainable due to geography. Most often, I find that I turn to books and blogs. Recently, I have found the blog Write at Your Own Risk and Orson Scott Card’s Characters and Viewpoint especially helpful.

Laziness is the enemy of writers everywhere. Stand in opposition to mediocrity. Stand with a community of like-minded writers. Seek out the culture of writers, even if you can only find it on the page.