I used to write very consistently, every day. Of course, that was before I had a rewarding, but draining, job; this was also before I had anything closely resembling a life, as well. Now I have both, and the caveat to that, which in a million years I never would have foreseen, is that I don't do as much writing anymore. Sitting down and getting into a writing zone now takes more time than the actual writing itself used to. I just can't focus; I can't shut my mind down on my day, or things coming up, etc. and focus on what I need to write.
If you've read this blog for awhile, you saw entries on all of my ideas about viruses, vampires (of course; though in my defense, I started The Gravediggers in the mid-90s, before it actually became something that everyone and their brother wrote), concentration camps, WW2, and all of the other things I've mentioned as ideas. I have a million of them, and I start things, and then I get excited about something else, or my career rears its head, or I simply lose focus on writing in general--and everything just peters out. All of those great ideas, all of that energy and positive feeling...just...drift away.
Reading a lot used to help. Now, all of that reading time is all I've got for creative time, so all reading, no writing. Reading used to help writing--until about two years ago. Then a few months ago, I started taking pictures that tied into my writing, and that helped a lot...for a few months. Now that I've taken all the pictures I can take, that process is of little help now. These days, it's all photos, no writing.
Then, a few days ago, I realized that I hadn't written any poems in a long time. While I would never say I was a gifted poet--or even a good one--I can say that writing poems would focus me, ground me into whatever I was writing at the time. The poems themselves didn't have to correlate with whatever project I was working on at the time--though they sometimes did--but the very process of writing them apparently would hone my focus to such a degree that I was able to work on my longer creations. Somehow, as so often happens to hyper and unfocused people like me, I stopped doing that, got sidetracked, and never went back.
So now I will work on poems again, and although Frost and Dickinson don't need to worry about their posterity, maybe, just maybe, some present-day novelists should be looking over their shoulders and not ignoring the dustcloud that just kicked up a long, long way back, just ahead of the horizon behind them. Wish me luck, everyone, and if you have any tricks to help me along, I'll gladly listen.
Causes Steven Belanger Supports
APSCA and a couple of others that I forget until the pledges come in the mail.