Infinite capacity to stand in my own way
If I can’t write when I am up, dressed, fed, and it’s writing time, I need to ask myself Why?
Blocking the internet is only PART of it: the other part is to figure out what, today, is keeping me from just getting to it.
I don’t even have major brain fog at this instance: this is my golden time. But I can’t seem to write THIS scene.
Emotional Resistance to writing
I will coin a new term for it: ‘Emotional Resistance.’
Today I am having to unstick myself because I have been at a place which is tough for all writers: the point where I choose to write emotional truth.
My brain insists:
It never happened.
Or not that way.
Or maybe it did.
No matter: the world changes when a writer dares to put emotional truth out into the world by not only writing something down, but setting it up for eventual publication, where any stranger can see it.
There is no going back.
If you don’t want something known, never tell anyone, never put it into tangible form (even in an encrypted file you think you’ve deleted on your hard drive), never put it on the internet.
And if it included another person, and that person is alive, your secret is already out.
Most secrets aren’t worth the pain they cause. At worst, people will laugh at you and call you a deluded fool.
But writers don’t have the luxury of hiding the truth. Writers do the opposite of sane with our secrets: we take the risk of looking ridiculous, put it out there for all to see, alienate families and friends, because that’s our emotional capital: what happens to us (virtual or real) AND our capacity to write it.
And the willingness to do so, of course, but we are not writers if we don’t have that.
You can be safe, even as a writer. That’s your choice. You can go to your grave with all the squishy bits hidden from public sight: just don’t write them.
I think it’s the wrong choice. The easy way out. An avoidance of duty.
Writers write because they can. Because they have to. Because it is our JOB to put into words what others feel and CAN’T put into their own words.
For me, it’s either accept the job – or stop calling myself a writer.
Let it out
So I dug as deep as I could, dragged out every bit of fear and reluctance and modesty, and plopped it right down there on the page as raw material for the scene which was ready to write, but wouldn’t write itself.
There was a lot of it. Pages and pages of emotional truth, of things I wouldn’t want anybody to think about me or suspect about me or know about me. It hurt. Some was stuff I never wanted anyone to know.
Some of it will end up in the finished scene.
Some of it won’t belong there – it isn’t relevant.
The relevant part is that hiding it was keeping me from tackling this scene, from giving it what it needs, wants, and deserves. Any pain to me HAS to be collateral damage, not my excuse for self-censorship.
I can tell you one thing, though: even though it was the proverbial ‘sit in the chair and open a vein,’ it was also highly cathartic. And the Emotional Resistance will stop being in my way.
It poured out: over 900 words of mostly-finished text. I don’t even count the several thousand words of writing-about-writing, or this blog post (600 words) – that’s just my usual thinking process – the CFS brain can’t think in-house, so it outsources it to paper (often literally).
Until the next time.