Wondering what to do next

Image courtesy of thaikrit at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of thaikrit at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

 

 

 

 There’s no such thing as writer’s block. That was invented by people in California who couldn’t write.

                                  ― Terry Pratchett

 

 

Here I am, sitting at my laptop, waiting for inspiration. I’ve been woefully unproductive in my writing for the past month. I can attribute some of that to the flurry of end-of-summer activities crammed into the month before the early start of the Nevada school year. There was camping, school shopping, and a bluegrass festival to attend. Yet I can’t lay all the blame on our schedule.

Perhaps it’s due to the various physical ailments I’ve experienced in the past month. My doctor found that I have an ulcer, prompting some changes in my lifestyle. Unfortunately, one change was eliminating my daily dose of anti-inflammatory medication to control arthritis. That resulted in a “trigger finger,” which requires a splint for a while. It’s awkward to type when your middle finger can’t bend. And it’s equally awkward to have your middle finger sticking up all the time. I apologize a lot these days.

No, I don’t think that’s the reason I haven’t been writing. Perhaps it’s the heat? We’ve had unusually high temperatures for several weeks and I feel quite dull and lazy. No, that’s not it, either. We have air conditioning and I don’t usually write outside.  Perhaps I am too distracted. I’ve been editing the proof of a story about to be published, a story that has caused me angst ever since I wrote it. I dread its release into the world even though the journal’s circulation is small. There have been moments when I wanted to snatch my creation back, to say no, this one’s not ready to be read. But the edits are done and the story is no longer mine to protect. So I can’t use that excuse anymore.

Yet with all these possible excuses, I don’t believe that any of them are the true reason I’ve avoided writing. No, I’ve the uneasy feeling, the dreaded realization that I may be experiencing (whispering) writer’s block. There, I’ve said it. Oh, I’ve heard the rumors, the frightening tales of writers who spent years staring at blank pages, unable to type a single word. I didn’t think it would ever happen to me. I can start anytime I feel like it. I’m not as blocked as that other writer. I don’t have a problem.

Slowly, I am coming back. It’s baby steps for now. A paragraph of fiction, maybe an outline.  A hastily scribbled poem. A blog post. I can do this.

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This entry was posted in creative writing, random, summer, writer's block, writer's excuses, writing. Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Wondering what to do next

  1. foxress says:

    Great post. I’m sorry for your ulcer and arthritis, but a splinted middle finger, well that could come in handy.

    • renobarb says:

      Yes, “the” finger can be handy but I worry about waving it at the wrong people! And then the anxiety from that act would make the ulcer act up. A vicious cycle, don’t you think?

  2. I recently read a book about creativity cycles and how ideas form themselves. It said that creative people go through two types of phases : The receiving and the producing. The more intense one phase is the longer and more intense the next one should be. You wrote you work on editing a story plus you’ve just moved and your middle finger is obviously sending the wrong message. Well, it sounds like you have produced a lot lately and put your energy in many different areas of your life and being. Maybe you just need to go through a “receiving phase” before starting investing yourself in a new project ? This said, I hope you will soon get better.

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