I’m so fragile. You are too. Don’t deny it. We’re strong for other’s, but weak for ourselves. And it’s all in our heads.
Damn that voice, that egocentric voice! It’s why writing or any other creative pursuit is hard. When people see it they say “I could do that”, but they rarely do. If they get the nerve to try it they’re unimpressed with the results; and they say “Wow, that’s harder than it looks!”. Unless they’re lying to themselves. Which is what we do as writers. We lie to ourselves every day.
We say “This is easy, I have a million ideas!”. The issue is that we need to get one good idea down on paper, not a million. So we do the only thing a sane person can (no, not quit). We break down like a faulty machine part. We let the entire machine go quiet until we can replace the bad part in our head, and then we kick start the machine and get it chugging again.
This little book may help you keep the machine running. Writing Down The Bones by Natalie Goldberg. My copy is 4.5 x 3 inches, a tiny book. I use it. I flip it open and read one little chapter (after all, it is a little book). It helps me- it might help you too.
It’s a crazy world, the writer’s head. Just get that one good idea down; then another, then another… Meet me at the asylum, I’ll be the one in the corner, mumbling… ~TH~
I’m reading (actually skimming) 2 books from the library on the subject of writing. An awful lot of what I read pertains to finding inspiration, a bit of billowy advice IMHO. I have to say that finding inspiration isn’t a real issue for me, at least I don’t believe it is. No, right now I’m struggling mostly with the process. Trying not to edit as I go; trying to remember anything from the english classes I dozed through; trying not to compare my writing to others. Even now I’m stopping and rereading to edit this entry. “Stop it!” my mind shouts, but my fingers ruefully ignore that command as my eyes shamefully rise up to peer at the previous paragraph.
It is habit I know, habit that can be changed, habit that will change. I have been a songwriter for a number of years, so I do understand some of the process. My first songs were not very good. Some of the new ones aren’t all that great either, but I have learned (through practice) to follow through and complete those songs; and then (equally important) let them be what they are. Who am I (or you for that matter) to make lofty decisions on what’s “good” or what’s “bad”? The true desire I think is to tell a good story, then have an audience for it at some point. An audience who gives a little thought back to the story, something they relate to. It’s the way we measure success. Which ironically flies in the face of what creating is all about. You’ve heard it before, “Let yourself go… free your mind”.
Yeah, right. As Spongebob Squarepants most eloquently stated to Plankton on the subject of ruling the world; “Good luck with that.” ~TH~