Writers and Spiders

DSCN9387Writing and spiders don’t connect, unless a spider spins it’s silky web and attaches it to a writer…then they’re connected by threads, but that just creeps me out to think about…so casting that thought out of my head, I will continue on.

I’m a writer…and there are spiders and spider webs all over my back yard. Ick. I promised weird facts occasionally, so I looked up why there are so many arachnids in the fall…and it’s because they are on a seasonal timetable. They hatch in the spring, reproduce and die in the fall. In the summer, they lie low to keep from being eaten, but by fall, the survivors are large enough to start spinning webs and scare and annoy humans before they die.

Boiling all this down to a song: they’re living like they are dying.

Who knew Tim McGraw was talking about spiders when he wrote that song. I didn’t.

More Halloween garden spider facts are:

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    Chemistry homework left all over the grass

    Grass spiders (funnel web spiders) spin webs on the lawn and are ground dwellers. I always hope my kids mow as many of these bad boys up when they do the lawn because I hate a webby lawn.

  • Spiders are expert chemists. Their webs are made from liquid protein inside a spider’s body that hardens to polymer when exposed to air. That is pretty intriguing except when they splay their chemistry homework all over my grass, bushes, trees, patio, stucco. That hardened polymer is a thorn in my side.
  • Most of the world’s 35,000 species of spiders are not poisonous. [Note however: they don’t wear signs stating which kind they are; hence, outside, I leave them alone. I did read Be Nice to Spiders to my kids when they were little–but I have my limits. They cross into my inner sanctum, they are fair game for the bottom of my shoe.]

Some writer related facts (as they pertain to spiders) are:

  • Some writers don’t like spiders. Some do (go figure)
  • While spiders create sticky webs, writers try to do the same with words. We want to weave an awesome plot that is organized and beautiful, but that sticks readers so they can’t leave our books. I guess in that way, we are like Black Widows. Except we aren’t trying to kill our readers, we just want to get them stuck until they reach the end…then we let them go
  • But writers want to snatch readers back right after they leave our sticky web and say: “Hold on! Did you leave a review about my sticky web so others will come and sample and get stuck to my words also? If not, get back here.” And we chase them down like a Hobo spider. Shiver. Not really….but kind of.

So writers and spiders have more in common than I first thought. Still, I’d rather not be connected to one. Now excuse me while I dewebify myself. I don’t want any spider polymer strands trying to dissolve me. I’ll stick to writer’s sticky words.

What about you? Are spiders creeping you out this time of year, or are you just rolling with the Halloween theme? Do you like to get stuck in books…and do you write reviews after you read so you don’t have no Hobo Spider/Writer chasing you down? I’ve learned that reviews are the best writer-cide you can use to get pesky writers off your back.

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24 thoughts on “Writers and Spiders

  1. I just read a post about cockroaches only to come to your blog and read about spiders. I think I better go get some bug spray.

    Love your analogy. I’m reading a book right now that’s got me in its sticky web. Unfortunately I have too much work to do to spend the long hours I’d like with it.

    I’m with you: I’ll leave spiders alone outside, but in my house, I can’t promise the same…

  2. I love this post, Charissa. So clever. I love your writing. We have been getting WASPS in our house, like one a day and I’m totally freaked out. My hubby has always been home and taken care of it. Yesterday my grandson’s other grandma stopped by to visit and we found one in the house and I’m such a wimp, I had her kill it for me. But today I’m on my own. So when one appeared by the front window, I vacuumed it up and placed foil over the hose so it can’t escape. My hubby thought the force of the vacuum would kill it. It didn’t! Now I have a pissed off wasp in my vacuum. I stuffed the vacuum in the closet and I’m just hoping he doesn’t escape. I’m calling the exterminator. I can’t stand creepy crawlies.
    My favorite spider book is Seven Spiders Spinning by Gregory Maguire. Seriously good book. That’s the one I read to my kids.
    Really enjoyed this post!

    • Okay, I’d get an exterminator too. I despise wasps more than spiders, because spiders at least do something good. Wasps are good for nothing. In Vegas once I had a scare one day. All these bees started attacking my sliding glass door, and then a couple got in under the runners. I called exterminator and he sprayed whole back yard. I took the dead ones to my friend who is a bug science guy and he said they were the AFricanized killer bees and from the behavior I described they were searching for a new place to build a hive. Shiver. That scared me for a long time.

  3. Well, I don’t mind spiders outside, and they don’t make me scream or anything even when I find one inside, but yes… I usually squash them and flush them if they’re inside. Especially the big wolf spiders we have. They’re just… uh, no. Just no.

  4. I am so not a fan of the eight-legged! Moving to the South has been quite the experience with the sheer size of some of the bugs down here – HUGE at times. I am now creeped out and starting to itch – ha!

    Happy Day – Enjoy 🙂

      • GINORMOUS – Just Check Out My Blog Adventure Photos!!! Luckily hubbie has encountered the ones at home the past few days – think they are trying to come in due to the rains and the cooler weather.

  5. This post reminded me of Charlott’s Web. A writer writing about spiders 😉 I walked through a very fine web last night in my kitchen and knew that it was time to start bombing the place again 😉

  6. Oh, I love spiders, Char. They are simply amazing — how they can knock out a web in mere minutes? Wish I could knit a sweater that fast. If I find them in my house, I don’t want them there, but I will catch them in a cup and release them outside. They deserve to live, my friend! 🙂

    • I do love them (just not in my space). I always take pictures of webs because I think they’re cool and I love that spiders catch other insects. But they’ve made a real mess of my stucco this year, and for that…I am not very grateful. I’m too skittish to catch them in a cup. The Hobos here actually are aggressive and attack you when you get near, so I’m all about the shoe…and quick before they get me.

  7. I’m perfectly happy to let all types of creepy-crawlies go their merry ways outside. But I just wish they would stay there and not barge into the house! Now I’ll probably have nightmares about being trapped in a giant web…. 😉

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