Working My Way Out

Working My Way Out

I’ve been working my way out of a writing slump.

Lately, it has been difficult for me to find the energy and motivation to write or practice lettering, which has left me feeling stressed and overwhelmed. It is especially difficult not writing. I always feel a little off when I haven’t been writing enough.

Besides feeling like everyday life is seeming to take a lot more energy than usual, I recently applied for a pretty big promotion at work. I just had my second interview this past week and am waiting to hear back. Between applying for the position, preparing for the interviews, and now the anxiety of waiting to hear the decision, this has been taking up most of my mental energy and focus for the last couple of weeks, along with a few other things that have had me stressed out.

In my head I know better. I know that more emotionally off I’m feeling, whether angry, sad, anxious, or stressed, the more I should be writing. But that’s often when it’s the hardest to write.

I haven’t neglected writing entirely, but finding it difficult to focus, have been writing much less. The less I write, the less easily the words come out. The way I’m feeling reminds me of a fountain pen left too long without being used. The way the ink refuses flow through the nib, I’ve been struggling to form words. Last weekend I plotted some of a story I’ve been working on for several months, but the words only trickled out. I did not feel the catharsis I feel after a great writing session.

I keep trying, though, and slowly it’s getting better. I know that’s way out.To keep writing. And this is what I’ve been trying to do. Just the way the ink in a fountain pen writes flows more freely and writes more smoothly the more you write with it, I know the words will come more easily and more freely the more I write.

I’m learning to accept that there will be times like this where I find it hard to write. And sometimes things come up, and life truly can interfere, but going through periods like this doesn’t mean I’m a bad writer or am doom to be unsuccessful. I have to be willing to actively work through these times, finding ways to motivate myself and get the words flowing, which I am learning to do. I may never be able to avoid these times completely, but I do think that learning to work through blocks is a skill that be improved with practice and perseverance. I keep trying, and I do think my periods of total non-writing are shorter and fewer than historically. And continuous improvement is the best I can ask for.

On Fear, Self-Doubt, and Making Changes

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photo credit: Frodrig via photopin cc

Fear

Sometimes at night, just after I’ve lain in bed and am about to fall asleep, a terror takes me over. I think about how I abruptly moved 3000 miles away to the other side of the country, away from everything and everyone I’ve ever known. I think about how I didn’t so much as post this decision of Facebook, only telling the people closest to me, the ones I saw on a regular basis. I forget that, while it was a quick and easy decision for us, this was something my boyfriend and I talked about and planned for months before we moved. I forget because nothing went as planned, and sometimes I wonder if we made a mistake.

I think about everything I had there that I don’t have here–a slightly better a job, a car, friends. I think about all the people I left behind. I think not only about how much I need them now, but how much they might need me. I know they’ll survive just fine without me, but I feel like I should be there for them. I wish I could be there for them, for the big moments in life. I wonder if I made a bad decision. Continue reading “On Fear, Self-Doubt, and Making Changes”

Crossroads

This past week, I found myself facing a dilemma.
Boston city corner

Nanowrimo is ending, and I haven’t finished my project. It’s okay because Nano did what I wanted it to, and it got me writing. More than that, it got me thinking even harder about my future as a writer.

A few months ago, after a lot of thinking and soul-searching, I decided I wanted to go back to graduate school to pursue a MA in Book Publishing. This was a critical decision for me as I originally moved here for a completely different graduate program. However, I decided that writing is too important to me to not be a focus in my life, and that I have spent too much of my life with writing on the back burner. I always wanted writing to be a part of my life, but I always pushed it aside while I focused on other things that I perceived as “more important” or “more practical.” Continue reading “Crossroads”