Can’t seem to keep blogging
I’ve been trying, really I have. But I just can’t seem to keep the blogging coming. There are many reasons for this, other things to do, difficulty deciding what to write about, general frustration with the knowledge that as soon as I start to write about one thing I’m far less likely to ever write about the others. Yes, I do realize that this is even worse, because that way at least I’d write about one of them, but somehow that doesn’t seem to help.
I started this year jumping into the Post A Day challenge with glee. I abandoned the idea of actually writing a post every day before I even started, telling myself that as long as I had 366 posts by year’s end I’d call it a win. I did very well for a third of the year, but by this point it’s pretty clear I’m not going to make that goal. And that’s okay, we don’t always succeed in our goals. Sometimes trying is more important than succeeding, and I think this is one of them.
At least once during September I caught myself writing blog posts when I should have been doing something else. There’s a maddeningly vague, blurry line between, “Writing as procrastination”, and “Writing because it’s still more useful than whatever else I was doing”, and sometimes I’m honestly not sure which I’m doing at the moment.
Conversely, I’ve also found myself doing almost nothing when the time would be much better spent here, but I either couldn’t choose something to write about, couldn’t think of anything to say that wasn’t bloody obvious, or (more and more often, sadly) was so angry about whatever I was pondering that I couldn’t organize any thoughts coherently. This has especially stuck out as I’ve been having trouble sleeping lately, and found myself spending long stretches of the night essentially just laying there. It would probably make more sense for me to get up and write during those times, if I’m not going to sleep anyway.
Perhaps I should try to fix a schedule, say, at X time every day I sit down and write for a set time, and at the end of that time publish whatever’s more or less a complete post and save the rest for the next day. But I’m a little terrified of that, because every time I’ve tried to write with a deadline in the past, it’s gone very, very badly for me.
That said, in general this blog has been an outstanding success in its primary mission: the practice of writing. I write much faster than I did when I started, though it’s still slow and frustrating. It’s not as hard as it used to be, and I think I’m even getting better at writing clearly and keeping it from being as dry as an ancient mummy reciting a dictionary.
If I really want to stretch myself and keep improving, I should probably be trying more fiction.
I have an idea I’ve been fiddling with on and off for a year now, a space opera setting filled with high adventure. My plan was to work out a detailed framework for the setting, how things work, a vague idea of recent history, who the major characters are, etc. and then write by the seat of my pants from there. Just publish it here on the blog as a serial, make things up as I go, and see how long it takes to write myself into a corner.
I have all the work I did on that still, well-organized and waiting for more, but I could never really get a grip on the planets and politics of the setting. Some of the characters are still very fuzzy, too. Oddly, the fantastical sci-fi toys came pretty easily, and I know exactly how most of them work and what they can do.
I actually upgraded a few things after I got a smartphone, since it seemed silly that I could have a pocket-sized device in real life that could do more than a fantastical gadget from an imaginary distant future.
The funny thing about writing, to me at least, is that once I start doing it I think of more and more that I’d like to write about. While writing this post I thought of several current-events-type posts I could make, and that last paragraph sparked off something about imaginary technology in fiction and how it’s connected to real technologies in real life, and then there’s also that bit I thought of when skimming Treasure Island on my Kindle app…
And they crash together in my head, fighting for attention, but I have other things I need to do. The writing gets easier, but it’s still difficult and time-consuming and if I don’t take care of the chores between blog posts I’ll drown in them. And of course once I’m doing something other than writing, the inspiration fades and it’s much harder to start writing again.
Well, I suppose that’s enough self-indulgent whining for one weekend. I’m going to try to get some useful things done, and then I’ll come back and read this, and see if I can’t write about one of those things I mentioned.
Posted on October 13, 2012, in Daily Post and tagged If I can just keep moving I'll eventually get somewhere., Personal, postaday2012, procrastination, self-indulgent whining, writing is hard!. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.