I've always agreed with Dorothy Parker's attitude toward writing that I referenced in the title, but for the last year or maybe two, I could barely get past the that first bit.
I've talked about the reasons I couldn't/wouldn't write previously--so I don't think there's much need to dwell on them further--but the fact remains that I wasn't doing it.
I'd try, of course, I'd screw up my courage (because that's what it felt like I needed--courage. Courage, Camille, courage.), and pick up my pen. And then...nothing. Or not anything remotely worthwhile. I felt strangely over- and under-whelmed at the same time. I had zero enthusiasm for the task. I felt utterly devoid on any kind of creative thought, though I knew there was something there, something that needed uncovering. I was just too frightened to try gaining access to it. And that completely paralyzed me. I was like this weirdly overloaded circuit that, rather than burning up, flaming out from the excess, I simply shut off.
It was an awful feeling, this shutting down. Is this what writer's block feels like? I hated it. And because I'm a fairly smart person and like to avoid sucky, painful things, I stopped trying.
Then I tried again. I don't know why, don't know what made this time different. Maybe the not doing something started to suck more than the doing something that sucked did. Maybe I knew, way in the way back part of the brain that exactly nothing would change by doing nothing. That even something that felt terribly inadequate and superficial was better than a blank page. That even something inadequate and superficial might something lead to something that was pretty goddamned adequate. A lot more goddamned adequate than a blank piece of paper at least.
|So that's how she kept her tongue so sharp.|
At any rate, I don't know if this will last, if this is the breakthrough that I needed or just another false start. It certainly feels different this time. Honestly, I don't care. It's less crappy-feeling and that's a step in the right direction.
I love having written.