I’m not sure if I am suffering from a case of writer’s block, laziness or the aftermath of a long boozy weekend in my home city, Leeds – Yorkshire, Yorkshire!! (apologies for the chant, us proud Leeds folk will often slip into it without thinking!) followed by another boozy weekend on an all day Hen Party but I haven’t even attempted to write since my last blog post, which was over a week ago.
I haven’t done any of my writing exercises from a book named ‘The Five Minute Writer’ – five minutes! I can find five minutes in my day but I’ve chosen not to. Nor have I started writing a short story for a local competition – the deadline is 31st October, and I haven’t even started it! And don’t get me started on writing prep for NaNoWriMo.
NaNoWriMo or National Novel Writing Month as it is formally known, is a creative writing month long project where participants sign up to attempt to write a 50,000 word novel. Granted it won’t be a polished piece of work but a novel nonetheless.
After years of knowing about it I’ve decided to get involved. I’m hoping it will get me into a routine where I’m putting some time aside each day, not just five minutes, to focus on writing. You know that thing I’m really passionate about?!
Well with one more day to go until the launch on 1st November I’ve already spent time thinking of ways to back out because ‘the time isn’t right’. A case of ‘quit whilst you’re ahead’, or in my case ‘don’t start rather than trying and failing’.
Last Thursday after I turned my work laptop off I went for a walk in the rain, that fine rain that laughs at the use of umbrellas but still manages to suitably soak you, and gathered valid points as to why I shouldn’t do it.
- I’m so busy at work at the moment, I’m too exhausted to think creatively afterwards
- I have plans every weekend. Parties, a wedding, visiting friends etc.
- This will put dating on the backburner for another month
The last point made me laugh and threw me off my point building exercise. I really haven’t been on enough dates to warrant even thinking that let alone using it as an excuse.
I then moved onto asking myself the big question:
“Am I really passionate about writing?”
Because if I was passionate I wouldn’t be stalling? I wouldn’t be sat in front of the TV in the evening. Would I?
Not if you take note from the countless personal development books I’ve read, to which there have been many. With quotes such as:
- Passion never fails
- Do it with passion or not at all
- Without passion life is nothing
The quotes go on and on – throw in a ‘live it, breath it’, ‘sleep when your dead’ and ‘hustle’ and you get the picture.
At the beginning of the year I would have taken what these books said as gospel and tried to live my life the way they instructed – because ‘Success leaves clues’ so ‘Why reinvent the wheel?’
Then I would feel guilty because I wasn’t living up to the quote. Then I wouldn’t feel good.
So I gave my head a wobble and remembered the book I read: ‘Daily Rituals’ which shares how creatives such as Hemingway, Warhol, Picasso, Austen etc. found their inspiration and made time to create their work.
They followed their own path and published best-selling novels, painted masterpieces and composed beautiful symphonies.
There wasn’t always consistency, yoga and healthy living and living like a hermit. They found out what worked for them and did that.
I’ve now moved the book back to my bedside cabinet and feel like me again. Just because I haven’t written in a while doesn’t mean I’m not meant to be a writer. I am passionate about it but my passion comes in waves! I know I’m not ever going to quit and I also know that there will be times where I spend hours at a time writing and nothing else.
I’m equally passionate about reading, working for the NHS and spending time with my friends – having a boat load of fun. And boy do I have fun!
I’m done signing up to all these unobtainable quotes that make me feel less of a human. Don’t get me wrong, the personal development books have been amazing and I will still continue to read and grow from them but I also grow and learn in other ways.
I’m sure that there will be a future blog post that raves about something I’ve read in a personal development book or falls in love with a quote. I am human after all, I’m allowed to change my mind.
I am going to start NaNoWriMo but I’m not going to force myself into unhappy despair whilst doing so.
We are all unique
Let’s appreciate and celebrate that.
p.s. Still no dates for November, they must have found out about how busy I am. Either that or there’s something wrong with the dating app I’m using – yeah, it’s probably that.
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