from blah to writing

It’s been one of those weeks.

A few bright spots have been sprinkled in here and there, but it’s just been one of those weeks where all these little things seemed to have built up, stacking pressure upon pressure until it feels like whatever it is that’s holding me together will rip at the seams with one more slight push. Like an old, creaky chair whose screws are loose, the next time someone sits down, the legs will give out and the chair will collapse into a heap of splintered wood.

Listen to me. I sound like my entire world is crashing down around me. It’s really not that dramatic. More like, it’s been a week where the smallest thing feels a thousand pounds heavier than it should. I’m not explaining it very well, am I? It’s just…blah. Like when you’re sick and everything hurts and the slightest moment can send your emotions into overdrive. My emotions feel like they’re on speed. High strung.

And you know what all this makes me want to do? More than anything, it makes me want to write.

Why is that? Why is it that at times I feel my worst are the times I feel the strongest pull to write? Like, somehow, writing will release all this built up pressure and I’ll go back to normal. Like when you poke a tiny hole in the soft area of a balloon to let the air seep out slowly, you eventually end up with the same shape as before you inflated it with your hot air. Whereas if you straight out pop its surface, the pieces of the balloon scatter—unrecognizable strips of rubber permanently torn apart.

When I’m happy and content, writing seems an afterthought. When I’m sad or not feeling fully myself, writing feels like this need. My sad feelings seem to translate into better writing material than my happy ones. Does that make me a writing stereotype?

“There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”
—Ernest Hemingway

When I first started writing Jaded, I wasn’t in a very good place. I was sad and dealing with a lot and writing became this sort of therapy. An escape. A way to throw all my feelings into something productive. Somehow, somewhere along the way of writing my first novel, I started feeling better. I became myself again. Like I’ve previously mentioned, I never intended to write a novel. I wrote small scenes and random conversations that turned themselves into pages and chapters and eventually…a book.

Now Jaded’s completed and I feel like I’ve lost my outlet. Yes, I have that lovely NaNoWriMo piece that desperately needs work. But, I’ve promised myself I won’t touch that manuscript until I get Jaded in the hands of agents.

That means finishing my query letter. I’m not much further along on that than I was two months ago. I do have more than an opening sentence, though. I actually have a full, working draft—albeit a rather rough one. It’s nowhere near where I need it to be. I guess it’s a start. Better than nothing, right?

Does anyone else go thru this? Do you write better when you’re happy or when you’re strung out and feeling…blah? What state of mind are you in when you produce your best material?

Here’s to hoping my blah week turns into something productive. Who knows? This time next week, I might have a working query letter.

– lindsey archer

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1 Comment

  1. I completely relate, but that mindset doesn’t really produce good work for me. I’m too afraid of coming across as whiny. :\ I hope things start looking brighter soon!


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