Some of the kind readers of this blog have asked me why I haven’t been posting anything.
The truth is that I want to. The greater truth is that too many things come in the way.
Here’s how it goes.
I start a new post, intending to write a few hundred words that are as profound as they are witty.
Profound is important. Or do I mean zen? Zen is infinitely more enigmatic and cool. It’s also a term I use a lot, usually with a superior expression when people look pointedly at my mismatched clothes or split ends. But then again, profound is more global. Well, there's a good way to find out what I do mean. After a good bit of wandering down scenic hyperlinks, I know that both are hard, and eminently dispensable.
I settle for witty and start writing.
Two lines down, I find my post littered with a flock of squiggly red lines. With a snort, i change the language to UK English. The flock grows. Not willing to get intimidated by a mere programme, I snort again, copy paste my two lines into a word document and disable spellcheck.
All that's left now is to shoot out those few hundred words, in an elegant and unperturbed way. I know it can be done, i have a friend who's getting two books published this year. When's the launch of the second book i wonder, and email her.
By the time i switch tabs again, I see that my writing has shrunk from two lines to one. Blogger's puny text box had made my writing seem twice as eloquent.
I think of all those talented people who write a few thousand words before breakfast or between jail terms, and realise, in a blinding series of epiphanies, that I hate each one of them. I also hate the paper clip that unfurls and widens its eyes mockingly like a demented yogi. I zap it into a kitten, and then into a puppy. After right clicking both options to check out animation, i know that the puppy works. My writing still doesn't. Or does it? I open a new tab and log into site meter to see how many people have visited my blog. A mere handful (I refer here to the hand of an embryo before it sprouts fingers). Last week might have been better, I console myself, and click to find out. The graph of the the month's visitors looks like a line up of midgets.
I would be discouraged at this point if I didn't know that it's silly for a writer to hold on to convictions that have lost relevance. This is the time to do something about it, I sternly tell myself, and drop witty from my list of to-dos for this post.
Now free of all pressure, I remind myself of the basics of writing. Focus on the material you have, and translate it into words without worrying about anything else.
I know I can do that.
I start a game of scrabble.
2 years ago