It’s the eleventh hour. I’ve been staring at the blank screen for a while now, willing an idea to come into my head and out of my hands and onto the page. I’ve scanned my feed of blogs I follow, looking for a spark of inspiration, an “I can write about that too” moment. I’ve looked through my copy of Old Friend From Far Away, focusing on the highlighted sections, for a prompt that grabbed my attention, begging to be written. The only one that remotely stood out was “write about a memory of a popsicle” but I quickly tossed it away. I googled writing prompts and quick write ideas, but it was all too overwhelming and most of them were trite anyway. I opened up Pinterest, willing one of my pinned quotes under “Quotes I love” to leap off the page and inspire greatness. Not today. Succumbing to the writer’s block isn’t a proud moment, but it’s the eleventh hour and I haven’t sliced, so here’s my meager slice for today. Let’s hope inspiration strikes tomorrow.
“If you wait for inspiration to write, you’re not a writer, you’re a waiter.”Dan Poynter
I’ve been incredibly indecisive today. It took me over an hour to decide what to eat for dinner. I couldn’t decide what to watch on Netflix. I’ve avoided writing by spending too much time on social media. I’ve looked for inspiration on Pinterest and my bookshelf. I’ve stared at the screen for over an hour trying to figure out what to write.
But instead of finding inspiration, I’ve come down with a bad case of writer’s block. It happens once every SOL Challenge, but since I got through the mid-month hump, I figured I was safe this year. It’s Day 28. By this point in the challenge, I’m usually coasting, already mourning the impending end of the challenge.
It happens to us all, but let me tell you, I’m really looking forward to getting back to my normal writing self tomorrow.
I’ve been stuck for over an hour. Unable to figure out what to write, racking my brain for the right slice of life to share. The problem is, there’s only one thing on my mind, and I can’t write about it. Well, not here at least. In my position, there are things that happen that are confidential, and blogging about it is pretty much the exact opposite of confidentiality, so herein lies my dilemma.
Despite trying to process how to handle the situation, I will myself to come up with something else to slice about. I mentally review my day, pausing to take note of anything remotely interesting or slice-worthy to write about, but I keep coming up empty. So what do I do? Well, I look for inspiration. I turn to my writer’s notebook, scanning my Slice of Life ideas that fill up two pages. Nothing. Opening Pinterest, an app that’s been collecting dust for a while, I peruse my boards in search of an idea. My “Writing” board calls to me, and in it, I find teaching ideas for writing, along with writerly quotes I’ve collected over the years. As I read through the quotes, I come across one that stops me in my tracks.
“All writing problems are psychological problems. Blocks usually stem from fear of being judged. If you imagine the world listening, you’ll never write a line. That’s why privacy is so important. You should write first drafts as if they will never be shown to anyone.”
Boom. That’s it. My writing problem is a psychological problem. Here I am bursting with so much to say, so much I need to work out surrounding a particular issue, but I’m afraid of what people will say. What if the person I’m dealing with with reads my slice? What if other people not related to the issue read my slice and wonder why I wrote about something so private? And this is why I can’t write today, at least not about what is really going on. So instead, I write about my writing problems, and that will have to be enough for now.
Writing today is tough. I’m staring at the clock, watching it count down, getting closer and closer to deadline time. If I wasn’t part of the SOLC, I wouldn’t write a post today. But I am a part of this challenge. I’ve committed to writing everyday. Even when it’s tough. Even when my mind is blank. Even when I don’t feel like it.
It’s odd that I feel this way today. Just yesterday I had an incredible conversation with Franco and Linnea about slicing. I talked about my struggles and triumphs during the past 27 days. I told them about how I felt energized and empowered as I watched myself becoming a writer. I even shared my sadness that the month is almost over and there are only 4 more days of slicing left. So why am I stuck today?
Sure, I’ve got ideas for possible slices, but they all seem inadequate. I want to write a post that will make someone smile, make a connection, cringe, laugh….react. But everything I try falls short of the mark. It’s interesting how I began this challenge writing for ME, but now I write for YOU. Franco reminded me that the point is to write for me, and if others react to it, great, and if not, that’s okay, too. Ugh, I’m talking in circles. For now, this is enough. Tomorrow is another day. Tomorrow I’ll have something to say….I hope!