Hemingway is quoted as saying, “There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”
Oh how true that is.
This is a different kind of blog post for me folks. I’ve got no advice this time around, no witty repartee on good writing vs. bad. All I have this week is a sad tale about something most writers have experienced —writer’s block.
I don’t even know if it’s truly accurate to call what I’m experiencing writer’s block. I have plenty of ideas, I’m just unable to get them out of my head and on paper in any coherent manner. Every word I try and write, comes out through a laboriously slow process that sometimes finds me sitting with one sentence for hours, even days. So yes, Hemingway was right, what we do isn’t easy, and it often feels as if you’ve left some of yourself in every story finished or unfinished.
So, what the hell do I do? If I had that answer, I wouldn’t be bothering you, right?
The abundance of ideas is a blessing yes, but when they’re jumbled up and disorganized, it feels like a blockage. Like I need some kind of a word laxative to help the stories flow freely. Horrible analogy I know, but like I said, I’m in a funk.
My main problem is time. Most of us have a shortage of this valuable asset, but my lack of it does not permit me to sit and see these ideas through, and they wander around in my head, directionless. So I sit in front of my laptop, writing then re-writing what I just wrote over and over until the story doesn’t even resemble my initial idea.
I read somewhere that the best way to work out of a writing slump is to write. At this moment, I’d like to ring the neck of the guy who came up with that bit of advice. But as ironic as that statement sounds, I know that it is what I need to be doing; which is why I’m laying it all out here to you. If I sit too long in self-pity, trying to figure out why I’m in a slump, without at least attempting to write, this temporary problem may become all too permanent.
I’m sure this is just a momentary setback, a hurdle I will overcome; because the truth is folks I love writing. I love writing for SFB, I love the challenge of putting my ideas out there for you all to read. However, there are times like now, when my writing muse feels like my enemy. But I don’t have time to wallow in it; on top writing, I home school the kiddos, and wrestle with all the other duties that mothering, wife-ing, and life-ing requires.
Hemingway was right about the difficulty of writing, but I love it more than I hate it, even through the tough times. It’s possible that writing this blog, and saying all these things out loud is one way of working through the log jam. And maybe, just maybe this is the beginning of the end of the Great Slump of 2016.
Hmm…maybe I’ll write a story about a writer with writer’s block. I know, the last thing I need is another idea rattling around in my head. When will I ever learn?
~Welcome to a monthly look at the art of creative writing from all kinds of mediums: Books, music, movies, television, and anything else I can think of. If you have any ideas please feel free to offer them in the comments below. I hope you find it helpful as well as entertaining ~AN