I’ve been thinking a lot about writing this week – how much I talk about it verses how little I do it. I don’t really want to write a blog post about all of these anxieties that keep me from writing. That’s a little deeper than I really feel comfortable going on a Friday night.
But Sara, you say, if you had done this yesterday, when you were supposed to, would you have felt more comfortable? And anyway, isn’t that point of the blog, you ask – to talk about the things that make you uncomfortable, the things that keep you awake at night? Sometimes those things are television or cooking or wanting to travel. And some times those things are screwing up at work or generic ennui.
But sometimes, it’s going to be the act of writing itself, right? And on the days when you feel like you can’t write, like you have nothing to say, you’re always going to find yourself stuck in some kind of hole, some kind of endless feedback loop where you have to write, but you can’t, but all you have to say is that you can’t write and then where does that leave you?
I talk about writing a lot more than I end up doing it.
It’s strange too, because I’m always better at doing things when no one is looking. If I had my way, I’d have a secret room that no one knows about, with a balcony and a view of the trees and no internet connection. My phone would spontaneously combust at the door. I’d have a really good explanation for when people asked me where I was. God only knows if I’d get any more done, but I’d certainly feel better about it. And yet, I find myself spouting out about writing in these uncontrollable bursts.
I like poking wounds. I do it to myself when I get too comfortable, or restless, or board. I run my tongue over my toothache. I press on bruises to see if they still hurt. I don’t wait for things to blow over. I don’t confront them – that would be much too mature. But I go up and stand next to them in the hopes that I’ll at least be able to see what’s coming. Maybe I talk about writing so much in the hopes that one day, I’ll talk about it and it will suddenly feel comfortable, easy.
What right do I have to tell stories? Will I ever be able to make them as good on paper as they are in my head? What’s the point if no one will ever read it? Will I ever want to let anyone read it? Will I ever feel good at this? Can anyone ever be good at this? How can you possibly ever live up to the responsibility of it? Do you even want to be a writer? Why?
I know it’s never going to feel comfortable. I know that everyone has anxiety about it. I know other people manage to wake up early in the morning or stay up late into the night and put words to paper and move them around. I know people personally who are able to do this. I know lots of people made it happen because I pick up their books and I fall in love with them.
Today I was able to get to the end of this blog post. Poking your bruise doesn’t often get you anywhere, but today it got me 600 more words, I guess. Yesterday at work, I did some research. I carry my notebooks around with me everywhere.
I guess we’ll see where this goes.