Wednesday, November 11, 2009

How do you . . .

. . . keep writing sometimes?

We've had Big Stuff--some of it good, some of it not so good--going on here lately, and it's all had the effect of making me too tired, too distracted, too uninterested to write. I'm sure you've all been there.

The problem is that I'm trying to treat writing like it's my job. And if I had a traditional job, I couldn't allow myself the luxury of calling in sick day after day. And also after day. I'm pretty sure I would be losing that traditional job in a big old fat hurry if I acted the way I'm acting now.

Gotta get myself in hand. Gotta kick my own butt. Gotta STOP BEING ME.

(Any suggestions? I'm serious.)

7 comments:

wjmom said...

How about a reward for going to work for the day or for a couple of hours? A cupcake? A people-watching expedition (ya know, for inspiration)? A day off?

Oh, wait, skip that last one...

Kerry said...

So, there was this line on MadMen that I keep thinking about when I ask myself this same question: "They're the *creative* department. They look unproductive until they don't."

So, even in the real world, apparently (because I'm convinced that all of the characters on MadMen are actually real and just live in a slightly different reality; otherwise, why can't I stop obSESSIng on their lives?) there's a recognition that you can't always just "turn it on."

So I say give yourself some slack. You'll look unproductive until you don't.

Maybe the key is to keep doing little tiny bits of writing. Blogging, journal, email, whatever. I know I like set up a story--plot, main characters, etc.--and then just do nothing for a long time so random things can occur to me. The setup only takes an hour or two, then you can justify lack of action because you're "composting."

Amy said...

write about not wanting to write. You'll be surprised what else comes out.....

Emily Wing Smith said...

How do we stop being ourselves? I've always wondered that. How do I, an imbalanced person, live a balanced life? Why must I either spend 15 hours a day writing, or go to B&N to write only to end up looking at home decorating books instead?

I really have no suggestions for you. Just know that you are not alone in your conundrum.

LucindaF said...

Are you competitive? I say we have a contest.

Loser must take a picture wearing a loser sign and post it on their blog along with an ode to the winner. And foot the bill for the winners dessert of choice.

Or, if you're feeling really lucky, you could up the stakes. But I draw the line at streaking. I got so busted last time.

Lisa B. said...

I had forgotten about this quotation that Kerry brought to mind--

>>"They're the *creative* department. They look unproductive until they don't."

--but it's exactly what I was going to say. Don't kick yourself, because writing is just like this. And so is life. I also think that any kind of writing counts as writing, so maybe just count any kind of writing as writing. Any.

And you don't need to stop being you. In fact, being you is exactly what gets that writing done in the first place. You is a pretty great thing to be.

Ann said...

Thank you, friends. This was inspiring.