I sit here compelled to write…to write something, anything, before I burst. I have been spending a great deal of time thinking, but not writing…this has been my big chance to write. Boundless free time (left my awful job in May), but no words come.
It is not the pressure of “I should be writing” it is actually the fear of “what should I be writing?” I feel stuck because I always think if I write it should be meaningful and important. Yet, to get to that I have to simply start…the thing I can’t seem to allow myself to do.
It reminds me of a sentiment from a New York Times article by the writer Thomas Beller. In college I knew him peripherally. When I stumbled across his writing post-college it inspired me, particularly this quote:
Shakespeare & Company had been, for me, the original bookstore, the place where I would wallow for long stretches of browsing, seesawing between elation and a stunned sense of being overwhelmed and reproached, for the books I wanted to read but hadn’t, for the books I thought I should have read but hadn’t, and for the books I feel I should have written but had been too lazy and now someone else has gone ahead and done it.
What would it mean to write? It would mean opening that drawer of dreams and attempting to breath life into them. That is an enormous task. What if I fail? Does that mean I can’t be a writer? Still, if I never try, that doesn’t make me a writer either.
Too often I sit at the computer and read through old pieces or think of new ones, but I rarely send them out and leave many unfinished. No follow through. Thoughts without action. If I leave my writing in drawers and boxes, I’m basically burying them before they’ve had a chance to live!
How many of you have experienced this dilemma? What have you done to get your writing out there? Are you still looking for that something to get you going?