Naturally, I feel a little lost on what to write from time to time. I started this new-fangled writing schedule. It’s going well thus far, but it’s been less than two weeks, so I will keep you posted. Nevertheless, I find myself writing more (yay!) But what the hell am I to write about? (Boo!) I want to write stuff for my blog, perhaps strike upon an idea for an article, but I think that too much pressure scares off the ideas. Nevertheless, I have found that writing is a bit like running you just have to put in the miles, or words, in order to get what you really want. It can be frustrating as hell, but it’s just how it works.
I feel very excited to write, but I just don’t know what the heck to put down on paper. But I’m thankful to be excited, that’s a step in the write direction (ahh…I can hear those sweet, sweet groans.)
I realize there is a weird paradox about a blank page. It can be anything, and it has no expectations; however, we as writers want it to be perfect, whatever it is. But that is something we impose on ourselves. I’m not sure where the concept of, “we must write the perfect first draft!” comes from. I guess we all really hate editing, or we don’t want to “waste” our time writing something unworthy. But editing can be interesting, surprising, and even fun. And no writing is a waste or unworthy.
Again, like running, they say that the only bad run is the one you don’t do and the same goes for writing. The only truly wasted draft is the one you don’t write. Not everything written needs to be published or should be. Some writing can just be for yourself. In the grand scheme of things, writers are kind of an uptight bunch who need to take a chill pill and putter a bit.
Puttering is a great thing because it can lead to all kinds of interesting places. One needs to allow for exploration and see what happens. I don’t do this enough, but I’m working on it. But I also need to learn to not feel bad when my putterings actually turn into fruitful pieces.
I know this sounds barmy, but I sometimes sit down to write, and I think to myself: “Today I’m writing a stream of consciousness just for myself. This won’t be publishable and that’s cool.” Then I get started and something strikes me, and I start writing a publishable idea. I freak out that I’m not doing what I am “supposed to be.” Yes, I know I have issues, but putting the pressure off is probably why something came into my brain that’s usable. That’s awesome and not something to feel bad about. I have to remind myself that there will certainly be times when writing sessions won’t produce much of anything, but when they do I need to embrace it and forget about the intentions.
Writing is a strange and bizarre process, but perhaps that’s why so many are drawn towards it. It’s an elusive medium, and one that we are all in the pursuit of tackling. What makes it even more interesting is that we tackle it one day, but then the next we can’t grab on to it to save our souls.
Yes, it’s a skill and needs practice and experimentation. It has rules and general practices, but it is a fluid thing which presents so many options as well as so many pitfalls. This is what makes writing so awesome, so beautiful, and so enticing because it’s full of surprises and never gets old.