Monday, 3 May 2021

Writer's Block Word Vomit

      I'll be quite honest gang: I don't know what this post is going to be. I've just sat down to start writing, and we'll see where it goes. I've been struggling to write lately, so I thought the best option was to just start something, anything, and see if it would break through this writer's block. I mean, there's definitely a few posts on here over the years which have consisted in me writing about writer's block, and I've always gotten past it eventually.

Blank notebook lying open with a pencil on top
Jan Kahánek on Unsplash


     Something feels different about it this time though, starting with the fact that it's been going on (on and off) for the past year now. I've blamed the pandemic for a big part of that, as I so often write about things I've done and places I've been, which were pretty hard to do during two national lockdowns now. And more than just being stuck with writing, I've been stuck in life in general. I know I'm not the only one, a lot of us have just been watching the clock tick by this year, waiting for life to get back to normal. I've written before about toxic productivity too, as I've definitely felt like I should have been doing more with my time, especially seeing others achieve so much this year, and I've wondered why I didn't do the same. I've always struggled with motivation a lot too though, and 'ambition' is not a word I've ever attributed to myself.

     Anyways, we're rehashing old points and making excuses now. I think another big part of the reason I haven't been writing though, is I've been questioning if I even have anything to say. If anyone even cares what I have to say. I was really proud of my last post, and then it got barely any reaction when I published it, and it left me questioning 'what's the point?' I'm bored of outfits of the day and movie reviews and top five lists. I wanted to write something with more meaning, more significance, especially after all the troubles the world went through this past year. And I'm not lacking ideas or inspiration, I've got lists and lists of that! But I just don't think I have anything that new or important to share about any of it. Mine is just another voice lost in the sea of millions on the internet. 

     I think I've forgotten a lot of the reasons I write in the first place. I'm struggling to find the passion, the enthusiasm, the joy I used to get from it. Sitting down to write feels like a chore, and now that I'm working again and studying part time and we can see friends again and I'm trying to keep up with exercise and meditation, it just feels like the hours disappear every day. So when I do have free time, I just want to do nothing, and writing feels like too much work. I look at my list of ideas, and I just don't have the energy to start on any of them. It never used to feel like so much effort though. It used to be a fun hobby, and I wish I could get that feeling back.

     Maybe some of it comes from the fact that this blog, by its very nature, is meant to be for people to read. I've been posting on here for almost ten years now, but this is not a successful blog by any stretch. Not that I've invested into making it one; I don't write with SEO and clicks in mind, or at least not to the extent that others do, and I don't invest in advertising it beyond social media links. I always thought it would be nice to have readers, but that didn't matter too much. Yet recently I've found myself getting frustrated at the lack of readers, comments, shares, likes, whatever. It's a symptom of our times, that we're all so hung up on these things, whether it's your business, website, or latest Instagram post.

    I've tried writing other things, not meant for the blog, to see if taking away that factor would loosen the creative shackles a little. Some days it has worked well; but whatever I do write, I start thinking about "oh, could this be a book? could this get published online somewhere?" and then all my doubts and insecurities and fear of failure and rejection all come rushing back in. I've often thought I would quite like to make writing my career eventually; but in all honesty, I don't think I'm talented or driven enough to succeed in such a competitive field, and if it's going to suck all the fun out of it, then is it really worth it?

     So maybe I need to learn to write for me again. To not worry if blog posts are engaging enough to attract readers, or if my fictional stories have well-rounded characters and complex plots, or if my tone of voice is intellectual and funny and unique enough. I'm still not really sure how to go about doing that, in all honesty. But this post is certainly not planned or developed or coherent or engaging. It's mostly just word vomit. But it's how I feel right now, and maybe just writing that down is a start.

     I don't know, is the short version. I don't know what I'll write or when or how. I don't know what I'm going to do with this blog moving forwards; I don't want to abandon it, it's been a part of me for so long. But maybe the content will start to look different. And yeah, I know that's not a good thing for SEO and whatever, but I don't want to think about that anymore. 

     This is the first longer text I've written in weeks though, and it's messy and silly and personal and self-centred and meaningless. But I've written it, so that's a win for today.

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