Thursday, March 10, 2011

....It's like Riding a Bike

Unfortunately, I've always been a bad bike rider. I dunno, when I was a kid I could ride a bike okay, I was never one for tricks or stunts. I enjoyed the basics, the feel of rushing through the air, my legs pumping to pick up speed, the freedom a bike gives a kid.

As an adult, well, bike riding takes too much focus. Its work. Insulated by youth, I never really worried about the cars around me when I was a child. Now, I'm constantly aware of the speeding vehicles and my own lack of skill on a two-wheeler. It takes all my concentration to remain balanced. The seat is uncomfortable and bike riding hurts my back (I fell down a flight of stairs in college and add childbirth to it, my back isn't the best).

So where am I going with this besides the observation that I should be kept away from anything with the word "Schwinn" on it? Writing works the same way for me. If you asked me to ride a bike from point "A" to point "B" I could do it. It would be ugly and I wouldn't enjoy it, but I could make it. If I did this everyday, I would get better. My balance would improve. I'd find a way to ride where my back wasn't achy. Eventually I'd go further and enjoy it.

Once you learn to ride a bike, the basics of it are pretty programmed in. You don't forget. For me writing is the same way. Tell me to write something and I can do it. I can get to point "A" to point "B." It might be ugly and I may not like it. But it would get done. If I write everyday, I will get better and would eventually start to enjoy it again.

For me, its getting the motivation to even try. How much do I really want to do this? Why do I want to start writing again? Is it worth the effort? I think I have to remember the rush of when I was writing everyday and working on a project. I have to remember the wild abandon I felt putting words together. I have to go back and recapture the feelings I felt much like when I was a kid riding a bike.

Like anything worth accomplishing, it takes practice. It takes work and it isn't always fun. As Susan and Toni its going to take some writing garbage first. And I think the blogging helps. I do believe the writing will come back and be as good or better than ever. Sadly, I don't think the same can be said for bike riding. Think I will stick to my car.

Monday, March 07, 2011

At a Loss for Words....

I'm literally at a loss for words. They have deserted me. Every thing I write is a struggle. From a simple email to a Facebook status, I'm faced with a blank screen and a blank mind to go with it. I open a document and the words scatter like cockroaches when you turn on a light. Last week I had a WIP open and I couldn't come up with a single word to push the story forward.

It's not writer's block. With writer's block I can see where I want to go, I can see my plot, my scenes, my characters, I just struggle with how to get it altogether. This is different. I have lost my vision. Story lines and characters have always come easy for me. Execution not always so. But now my mind is completely vacant when it comes to telling a story.

Disheartening? Yes, a writer who can't writer is an unhappy puppy. But mostly I'm angry. I'm furious that this has happened, that I've allowed this to happen. Yes, I do blame myself to some extent. I took a break. That's fine, but I should have made myself go back sooner. Like anything else, creativity must be nourished, it cannot be left to linger. Anything worth having, feeling, doing must be tended. If it is left to neglect, it withers.

I don't believe this vacuum is permanent. I've taken long hiatuses before. The writing comes back but it is much tougher than it should be.

So, my writer friends, what do you suggest I do to jump start my words and get me writing again?