Friday, January 15, 2010

Uninspired Writer's Block

I feel anything I could write here would be completely inconsequential. Lazy. Powerless. Some lackluster post (much like the one you're currently reading) with no real motivation behind it. And it's not like I've been feeling sad or out of it. On the contrary, I'm very happy these days. The unemployment situation stopped robbing me of my sleep (though waking up at 8 AM every day really needs to stop). I'm a healthy 28-year-old who can still pay all her bills. Apparently I'm liked and the number of times I laugh like a maniac each day has risen exponentially over the last few months. I'm beyond content.

So why the semi-burnout? I remember those endless posts of torment and joy that plagued this blog. The exuberance immediately followed by some weeping, soul-searching piece. At least that constant up and down, love, hate I'd grown used to made me feel alive, somewhat in motion. Nowadays, I feel calmer, lighter, just going from one day to the next without being bogged down by what is, was, could've, would've, should've. Refreshing yes, but different. Instead of explaining why, I'm learning to experience this state of Just Being.

Fun times, but it doesn't help my writer's block! And not just for Dry As Toast, but for my freelancing as well. I have this constant need to churn out new ideas and my wheels are starting to jam. Perhaps it's the bleak season, working from home or the fact that as my own worst critic, I pressure myself too much. Are the best writers really the tortured ones?

Who knows, but it's funny how this current fit of uninspiration at least moved me to write something longer than four sentences. So, what's got your wheels turning these days?

Image: flickr.com

18 comments:

  1. Writer's block can really suck. Then it can be a great break from the usual pace, too. So look at this way:

    Writer's block=writing break

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  2. A lot of passionate writing is written from agony/angst - but I doubt all good writing is the result of suffering.

    You are doing well - sounds more of a motivational thing - the lack of deadline pressure - rather than any missing "call to write". You need to find a way to turn the old Adrenaline rush back on.

    How do you get the wheels turning? For me its interacting with others - and just seeing an odd angle or take on something that gets things going again.

    Of course nothings been turning my wheels all that much lately - been too busy thinking things through to write much. Once the thinking stops, the scribbled jots and notes will turn into things "that need to be written".

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  3. I hear ya! Sometimes our minds and bodies fall in line with the earth and its process (especially when we're happy!), so this Winter may be a period where you need to simply soak in copious amounts of laughter and fun and relinquish your inner deadline junkie for a few days, guilt-free. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE that you said you're learning to experience this state of Just Being! That has been a journey for me, and I'm learning the value of it more and more as I get deeper into my 30's. At 32, I'm just grasping the idea of sitting still and letting my mind rest, and it feels GOOOOOD!!!

    What gets my wheels turning? Interacting with my daughters, and also meditation. Funny how taking your mind off of writing can remind you why it's so much a part of who you are.

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  4. The phrase "misery loves company" really isn't just a "fairy/nightmare" tale. It's the truth. People tend to identify with and focus on the negatives, and with writing it's especially poignant. I think. Most people don't like feeling carefree, content...if they allow themselves the freedom to enjoy that must mean they're not moving. And if you're wallowing, at least your emotions are moving. Right?

    If you write about joyous moments, you probably fear coming off as having a perfect life and no one will want to identify with you. After all, how often do people/women roll their eyes when they hear another gushing about their wonderful evening/summer/life? ALL.THE.TIME.

    We need to overcome this. Maybe we should start a weekly "Focusing on Fun" post. It can only be positive, and not forced positive like "I have really good friends" shit. It has to be genuine, honest. Something you feel is truly RIGHT in your life and which you take joy in. Whatta ya say?

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  5. Writers block really sucks sometimes. Although, sometimes the things you do to try and get the wheels moving in your head again can be worth the short period where inspiration is lacking.


    I've found that the best cure for writers' block is a change of scenery. I don't know if it's an option for you, but perhaps taking your work somewhere else may help to inspire you? Perhaps - for example - you could sit in your favourite coffee shop to write... Observing the other customers may inspire some creativity? Or you could - if the weather permits - take a picnic and writing supplies to the park... Again, observation of your surroundings may give you the inspiration you need? Obviously there's no guarantee, but it's a thought. You never know, you could find yourself with so many inspired ideas you're set for articles and blog posts for the next two weeks just from one day out! Like I said, no guarantees... But that's what works for me. A change of scenery, something new to observe, and a little outing to remind yourself that you're not really a prisoner in your own home.

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  6. A possible story for you would be an "investigation" (I'll leave it to you to interprete that) into the "logistics" and "how tos" of joining the mile high club mentioned in a previous post - obviously your readers need "help" with this.

    :)

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  7. Even though it's not robbing your sleep anymore I hope you get employment soon. Happy SITS Saturday Sharefest!

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  8. Just stopping by from SITS!!

    Sure fire cure for writer's block - just write like no one's reading. Takes the pressure off and makes it about you. :D

    Have a lovely weekend xx

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  9. Interesting. You got me to thinking. My blogs are much more hohum these days. And now that I think about it, it is because my life has settled back down into some semblance of order once again. When I was going through the sickness, death, and aftermath of the death of my parents, my blog was fed by my sadness, anger and frustration. Enjoy your current peace of mind and keep writing in your blog - even if it feels uninspiring to you. It is interesting to us!

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  10. I think I've suffered from that burnout.

    Stopping by via SITS to say hello!
    Harriet

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  11. I love the first comment

    Writer's block=writing break

    I'm felling the same way so taking a break this weekend!

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  12. I'm in the 'just being' state as well and writing is slow these days. But, like you, it's been nice to go from thing to thing or space to space with little anxiety or fear and little introspection...which is so unlike me. I have to say it feels good.

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  13. Outside of my artarded blog, I write poetry, and let me just say that if things were 100% handy dandy as candy in my life, then I would never have anything to write about. Then I'd get depressed about having nothing to write about and then I'd write about that. Hmmm...quite cyclical!

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  14. Hey Dorkys! I just wanted to let you know that you won the prize on my blog this week! Congratulations!

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  15. Maybe you're not as happy as you think you are. Sometimes we laugh more than usual because if we didn't laugh we would cry.

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  16. african american mom, nice spin. I won't force this. I find that when I do, it comes out crappy.

    intense guy, yeah I think that's it too. No pressure to really put something out there. This whole "dancing to the beat of my own drum" is really slowing my pace.

    execumama, see in my case writing is such a big part of me that I can rarely get it out of my head. Either I'm thinking of something I wrote, something I need/want to write or I'm thinking about why I'm not writing. Madness really.

    tooj, I'm all for it. And I hope anyone who's stuck around for the past year knows that I most certainly do NOT have a perfect life. I think I've paid some dues so I'm enjoying this little rewarding time. I deserve this dammit! :) So if you're craving pity parties and tantrums go elsewhere please.

    Oh and about rolling your eyes at someone else's happiness? Yup, totally been there, done that and then hated myself for it. It was all about nursing my ego.

    toriz, thanks for sharing what works for you. I actually went out in the hopes of sitting at a coffee shop I heard about, but it was packed. I'll try again another day, but I do have an upcoming press trip at the end of this week so maybe that'll get me going again.

    intense guy, hahaha yes! Am seriously considering this one. Thanks for the idea (and the laugh)!

    goin to cali, I'm still not sure if I want to run back into a full time job at an office. Still looking around for the job that pulls me back though. For now, there's freelancing.

    bex, thanks for the tip and the visit!

    deanna, aww thanks so much! And I'm glad your life has also calmed down and you're getting a chance to breathe. That constant up and down takes such a toll on you.

    harriet, you're sure not the only one. We need a mental break from time to time.

    debbie, hope it was a unproductive one!

    heidi, that's wonderful. I know your blog has been pretty heavy these days as you recount your story, but I'm happy to hear your days are much brighter than the things you've been writing about! Enjoy it :)

    josh, I totally get what you mean. In high school creative writing class, most of my poetry was depressing. It's the circle of art I guess.

    joy, hollerations! Thanks so much!

    verity vaudeville (AKA debbie downer), well damn. And yeah, that's a NO. I am juuust fine. Are you?

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  17. Well, I'm totally a procrastinator!! Even on things I want to do and enjoy - weird, I know. So without a deadline and pressure, I can't do my best work. Adrenaline junkie???

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  18. Feeling rather uninspired these days myself. It's not that there isn't anything to write about, but more along the lines of I don't feel like discussing it. Well that and the fact that everytime I write a whiny post, I see someone else follow up with a "there's some of you with too much drama" post (timing, I know, but still) and of course then I feel inferior and bitchy and refuse to write.

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