Well. There it is.

Thanks to unhealthy, toxic Real Life environments for me the past year almost exactly, my “muses” have been unattainable. Writer’s Block seems like a very tame way to describe the impact of finding myself unable to consciously write. I have been able to help my friends with their ideas for stories and for characters, but implementing them on my own behalf has been nearly impossible. This is despite taking an interest and delight in the art and chaos that is a D&D marathon, many of them. 

What I found is that being physically silenced by the people around you can lead to a muzzling and depression of the written voice, specifically in the confidence required to believe that maybe anybody out there has any interest in what you may have to offer. 

And now tonight, I’m watching the results unfold to show that someone outspokenly backed by the Ku Klux Klan is winning the US Presidential election. I’m watching the country go to someone who has actively encouraged their blind followers to do all they can to silence the media and to trample their fellow citizens’ First Amendment Rights. The most worrisome factor is that people made this choice while claiming to want change, and yet hypocritically they kept the politicians in the House and Senate who have been around the longest and making the same decisions that people claim to disapprove of. There’s a disconnect between what people say they want, how to obtain it, and the way the world actually works. I have never heard so many seemingly rational adults admit to me that they have no idea how civics works but they know they don’t like how their country works.

People don’t know what they want, but they don’t want to hear from those voices that do know things. 

I’m not sure exactly how to reach those people, and I’m not sure how to break through the silence that hit me last year, but I am seeing tonight that I definitely need to try. There are stories that need told in order to help people understand their fellow human perspectives, to maybe step outside of their own worldview and really feel the impact that a single individual can have on those around them. 

Hatred is an intense emotion, rooted in fear, which is ironically itself rooted in their opposite: Love. You fear for things you love, and you hate things that cause you fear. Somehow a lot of people don’t seem to have made that connection yet, and they haven’t learned to fight their fear with information to wipe it out.

 That is the pervue of the writers and storytellers of the world, to help people process those life lessons. 

This is why I’m trying to find my voice again and why I hope more people start speaking up with personal perspectives and expand the definition of human experience. It is a colorful, creative, diverse, beautiful community and I have too much faith in it to write its obituary so soon.

Writerly things… Like Writer’s Block

I learned this week that there are different levels to the dreaded Writer’s Block. 

Somehow or another, after a solid six months of writing non-stop, I finally hit my burn-out stage this weekend.  No, really, when I say non-stop, I mean it.  I’m either asleep, at work, or writing since last September.  Sometimes I’m all three at once, which is disturbing, but cellphone notepad apps are really useful and portable.  This time, though, even the coffee has failed me.  I have been working on this project for half a year.  I’m at the end of it now and the home-stretch is in sight and… every idea I had for it just flew out the window.  I’ve been working at it all weekend anyway, mostly doing editing.  I want to write, but the ideas just aren’t there and I end up with disjointed words on the page. I can’t walk away from the project when it could be literally one scene away from being complete.

There’s just that one, tiny, miniscule little detail: I can’t figure out what comes next.

My usual response to this is to put the project down and go do something completely unrelated to writing.  Clear the mind.  Pull in some new creative inspiration.  Catch up on some TV.  But this is the last section of the project.  I want it done.  I want the little bird to fly and leave the nest. I’m impatient to move on to the next big idea.  Self-imposed pressure to finish the project is conflicting with the ideas for the new project.  But it’s like in gaming and I can’t level up to the next idea until I beat this boss-fight. 

Multitasking on projects is a very important skill, the ability to be flexible and to “diversify” the project load and everything. This would be the exact scenario to illustrate that argument.  It is obviously a skill I have yet to learn and will continue to work on.  So I’m just going to keep throwing words at the page until something sticks.