Last year was a pretty big one for me personally, mostly in good ways, and always in ways that made me grow as a person. My writing, specifically coming to finally really consider why I write and how that shapes who I am and have become, was definitely included in that: I went from trying and failing to come up with clever plans that would get me working on my revision consistently and reliably, to re-reading the whole draft again without taking notes, twice, to taking a break from the project altogether to give myself some space, to taking a break from writing altogether to give myself the options I’d been holding myself back from all this time. It seems that all my personal growth where writing is concerned has to do with doing less of it, or at least less of how I’m used to doing it.
As usually happens, I missed my big euphoric window of opportunity when it came; there was a period of 2-3 days where I was really excited about how things were going to change, and all I had to do was get started on trying out these new things, just let me play another few hours of WOW and I’ll get right on that … so naturally that didn’t work out so well. I’m in a slump now and it’s nobody’s fault but mine. And I’m not saying that if I’d gone on to try these exciting new things I would have felt any better; we all get stuck in ruts no matter what we do, and what was once new and exciting inevitably becomes familiar and uninspiring if given enough time. But I still should have taken my chance when it was there waiting for me. Now if I want the same chance, I have to make it for myself.
So I’m going to stop posting here. Definitely not a permanent thing; I’ll be back, and if things go according to plan I’ll be back very soon. But I’m going to stop posting stuff here until I’ve actually got something to write about – specifically, writing.
When I started this blog to escape my shame at owning my tumblr blog, it was with the intention of recording the daily life of a writer, including the boring stuff, the repetition, the going around in circles and re-learning lessons that didn’t stick the first time. I wanted authenticity. But now I want to get shit done. And it would be absolute denial if I were to suggest that what I put on this blog is in no way self-aware; I can’t just record my day-to-day life as a writer on this blog, because in maintaining this blog it becomes part of that day-to-day life. It is a part that has certainly been useful, but has also been an easy and ready excuse for procrastinating, and the fewer of those I have, the better. Mostly I procrastinate from writing by maintaining this blog lately, which is basically the exact antithesis of the intended purpose of this blog’s existence in the first place. And I’m all for sharing my personal, non-writer experiences with people; that’s been mostly what I’ve been doing lately, and lately this blog has gotten a LOT more traffic, so, I mean, I’m taking notice of that. I don’t mind that at all. In fact it’s rather dope.
But I still want to write, and do all this other stuff too, and I know that the more ready excuses I have to not do them, the more of my time will be spent on those excuses. Therefore I need to take them away. I am considering uninstalling WOW, or limiting myself to only playing in the evenings or something. I remember it getting to that point during my first year of being subscribed, actually; I put parental controls on myself so that I could only play after 6 every evening. That combined with only having a month left of my subscription and, hopefully, I’m in business – I do actually work better during the day, despite the fact that I keep expecting myself to enter the Magic Time once it hits about 1am. I don’t think that’s personal growth; I think that’s not being a teenager anymore.
I want a lot out of this year, and this is the first year where I feel, even despite letting several opportunities pass me by, that what I want out of the year is actually going to happen – if I put some effort into it. It feels like a task rather than a wish, and it’s a task I want to apply myself to. I owe it to myself. And it means that I have to stop doing a whole bunch of things, some for a little while, and others for good. This blog is one of those “for a little while” stops. I want it to become the place where I come to report on something that I just really, really need to share about my writing, about what I think or feeling about writing/reading/storytelling in general – I want this blog to be used in times of urgency, so that everything on it from here on out is there because I want it to be, not because I want to either escape from something I intend to be working on, or because I want something to happen when it’s not.
I want this blog to be inspirational, and the only way that’s going to happen is if I save it for occasions upon which I am inspired to use it.
Again, I am not quitting or leaving WordPress or anything like that. I just really need a break from what I’m doing the way I’m doing it, because for the longest time it’s felt like I’m endlessly stumbling my way forward, never allowing myself to stop and find my footing. I need to find my footing, find a destination I’d like to get to, and make my way there with intention. I’m sick of scurrying through my own thoughts, haphazardly noting down the procession of frantic, distracted notions that come to me in a blur and flit away just as quickly. It’d probably be informative for me to go back and read the last few months’ worth of posts I’ve made, see what was happening with me and where I was heading. But for the time being anyway, no more posts, not until it’s because I have something to share that I’m excited about, or proud of, or some kind of crisis that I can’t untangle in the confines of my imagination.
The big risk I’m taking here is that if I stick to my plan, things will work the way I want them to, and if I don’t, they won’t. That doesn’t sound like a risk, but I don’t feel at all certain that I will stick to the plan. I have such a bad track record of doing that; it only makes sense that I’d continue to fail at it. But that’s all assumption, and I know that, objectively. There is no reason why I have to keep repeating myself. And if I prove to myself that I can break that cycle of repetition, it’ll be that much harder for me to fall back into my unhelpful habits.
So here goes. On a break. Be back when it matters.