Monday, May 28, 2012

Writing is Hard.

I’m trying to be a real writer again/for the first time. And it’s hard. Look how many times I started this thing over.

writing

And I still feel all "ehhh" about it. I blurred it all out so you can’t read the things I wrote and promptly hated and X’d out, but each paragraph is a new start because I am a failure and will never amount to anything because I can’t even finish a sentence I like much less an actual book. Etc.

On top of being a terrible writer, I’m also a terrible procrastinator. For example, instead of actually working on something creative right now, I am writing this blog post. I’m telling myself that blogging is still writing so it still counts as work, but we all know that isn’t true. This post isn’t going to win any awards or change anyone’s life. And neither will my book, because I will never finish it. EVERRRRRRR.

All right, so that’s out of my system now. But for real, writing is hard. And scary, somehow. I feel like my time in California had the opposite of the intended effect. I was supposed to feel more creative, being surrounded by other people who loved writing and being creative, but instead I just felt really out of my league and like nothing I wrote was worthwhile (no matter what feedback I got, which was actually largely positive #humblebrag). It’s been almost six months since I left, but I still feel that way. I know it’s stupid, but I haven’t been able to shake it.

And I know all the advice – “just write! Just keep writing and it will all be okay! Somehow!” – but for some reason I’ve been too scared to, and in the last couple weeks since I’ve been trying to face this, I’ve written literally like, four pages. Handwritten. And then as soon as that happened it was instantly deemed too crappy to look at again, ever, and then I didn’t type it up or try to do anything with it because I just hated it, automatically, because it was something I wrote.

I don’t know what the point of this post is. I guess I just needed to vent. So thanks, internet, for existing and allowing me to spew my fears and insecurities into the void. I’m in a rut and it sucks, but hopefully that will get better. In the meantime, I’ll just be over here, watching Midnight in Paris over and over. And over. (AND OVER. Because seriously I just watched it the other day for the first time and it was instantaneously promoted to one of my top five favorite movies of all time.)

8 comments:

  1. Procrastination and Midnight in Paris for the win. Are you working on a full time novel?

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  2. Writing IS hard. I read this http://therumpus.net/2010/08/dear-sugar-the-rumpus-advice-column-48-write-like-a-motherfucker/ a while ago and I've kept it on my bookmarks bar because it's something I need to read over and over again. The following really hit home:

    Writing is hard for every last one of us ... Coal mining is harder. Do you think miners stand around all day talking about how hard it is to mine for coal? They do not. They simply dig.

    As in, stop yer whining Annie, and get on with it.

    I found one of the best rules I made for myself when writing was to not read back over what I'd written, either in the same session or the next time I sat down to write. If I did, I'd get too bogged down in letting that little voice in my head tell me how crap it was. But later on, after a few months when I'd read back over it, it wasn't really all that bad at all. Some of it was quite good even (#humblebrag). I think the important thing is distance. Write, write, write, and don't read it for months.

    Good luck! Now, to take my own advice ...

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    1. Okay, well, wow. This article is perfect. Definitely bookmarking it.

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  3. Girl, I know exactly how you are feeling. Procrastinating on the world's next great American novel has become quite the standard in my life.

    Just be comforted by the fact that you are not yet at Hemingway status with 40 polydactyl cats and your face permanently in a bowl of alcohol.

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  4. I also know the feeling...it's hard to get started, hard to keep going. I haven't written more than a blog post in a month!! Good luck!

    And Midnight in Paris is amazing!! Time well spent if you ask me;)

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    1. I got like five minutes into that movie before I became incredibly annoyed with myself for waiting so long to watch it. It's such a movie for writers and it definitely inspired me... to write and also to start pining for Paris, haha. The soundtrack is definitely getting a lot of play for me right now.

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  5. Anything I say to encourage you will probably come off as lame. I'm sure you've heard it all before, and I'm sure you've even told yourself all of it before! After all, I've never written a novel (though I'm working on one), so really, what do I know?

    That being said, I think you are very talented. Everything you write is interesting, entertaining, and credible. You write in a down-to-earth type of way that makes the reader feel like they're learning something while not being made to feel inferior. All of your stuff is both compelling and captivating, and it really is very, very good.

    The sky is the limit for you, but as corny as it sounds, you have to believe in yourself at least a little bit! Many people read your blog, some like me are total strangers, but we keep coming back to your site because of what a great writer you are.

    I would love to read a novel written by you, and I'm certain there are many more out there who would as well.

    So, keep your head up and don't be so hard on yourself! Just write. You have the talent, and you have the passion for it. Really, that's all you need.

    Decide what to be, and go be it!

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