As some of you may know, I’m halfway through a six month career break, the purpose of which was to see if I could do a bit of writing. Initially the plan was to see if I could write a few articles, as well as more frequent blogs, and see where it takes me. As you can guess from the lack of blogs on here, things are not exactly going to plan. And I am starting to panic a bit because I am going to look like an ass if I go back to work in January with nothing to show for myself.
That’s not to say that I haven’t written anything at all. In fact I’m writing a story at the moment and I’ve actually written 30,000 words. This is nearly three times what I wrote for my thesis, so in a way I’m proud. In another way, I’m also thinking oh my God you dingbat, you took time out of a job that you are passionate about to do this?! As I scroll through the pages, I think this is absolute drivel. No-one will read this, or if they do they will think you are a complete and utter twat.
Writing makes me happy. But does happy put bread on the table? I enjoy it. So do it in your spare time and see where you are in a year. I’m constantly being ripped apart by these voices who can never just agree with each other.
Then, of course, there’s the other voices. The mean voices, the ones who want to destroy your soul. This is shite. This is really shite. Who do you think you are, the next JK Rowling? Trust me, you ain’t.
– I don’t wanna be the next JK Rowling, I just want to write some words on a page and have them mean something to someone.
– No, this is absolute rubbish. Best thing you can do is delete it and pretend it never happened.
– I think I can do this.
– Yeah, well, you can’t, okay? You’re wasting your time. Just go and watch Eastenders, don’t worry your little blonde head about it.
But, being a worrier by nature, it does take up a lot of my headspace, thinking about things to write. And as time goes on, I’ve learned a few things about my writing habits, namely:
- I need to start bringing some kind of writing device to the toilet/shower, because that’s where all the good stuff happens. Only rarely does it come when Ali is in bed, and my laptop is in front of me. (Incidentally, it doesn’t come when I’m looking on Facebook, either. Funny that).
- I’ve started to write as if no-one will ever see it, because if I imagined anyone (especially close friends and family) reading it, I don’t think i’d write anything.
- Banging my head against walls and cursing colourfully at my laptop does not make the task of writing any easier. Instead, it usually calls for two Neurofen and a nap in a dark place.
- When my brain dies, I usually want to sleep, which means that there are unwritten words out there in the wilderness. Like now. It is ten to twelve and all I want to do is sleep.
- Even when I can’t seem to write another word, I still can’t bring myself to stop trying, even though the inability to do so makes me feel stupid.
God, I love writing. It’s such a peaceful, worthwhile vocation.
It really, really is.
Or so I hear.