I used to write pretty well. I could craft stories and write ‘em down as if I’m eating a bag of chips. It was easy for me. Surprisingly I think this stems from my love of film, television, music, and Wikipedia, as opposed to books or novels. I was never a big reader, I mean, I’m not an idiot, I can read. I just always chose a movie, or watching a gig, as opposed to staying in and reading a good book.
It was never a problem for me. I’d do all those things, and still be able to write, poems, lyrics, stories, and even screenplays if I wanted to. Simply put, writing was just fun for me. It was never a chore or something I HAD to do. If I wanted to write something I would. Writing, for me, was something that came naturally. If I was inspired, I’d write. Nothing could stop me from that. Though I must admit there were times in my younger years that I would wake up in the wee hours of the morning drooling over my keyboard. That cost me extra in keyboard repairs.
Now, it seems that things have changed. The jist is in my head, but my fingers simply could not slam it down. I can still write, as evidenced by this post, but not in the way that I used to. I’ve come to the very obvious conclusion that something has changed. The drive just isn’t there anymore. I think here lays the problem. Not just with writer’s block, but with the creation of anything that could be deemed “of value” to oneself.
Writer’s block is a hard thing to face. You have that message in you, but you just can’t seem to get it across. That is a sucky feeling. It’s like you’re literally forgetting how to use a spoon. I think everyone can write regardless of education or upbringing, or whatever. The main difference lies in one’s ability to transfer a message (be it humorous, dramatic, etc.) from one person to another in a non-boring way. Writer’s Block happens when you yourself are bored with the message you’re trying to get across. And to be frank, I am fucking bored. Of everything.
This reminds me of a conversation I had a few years back with a friend of mine. As mentioned, I used to write a lot, poems, lyrics, verses, etc. And my friend would always review some of ‘em when she had the time. More often than not it would be a criticism of my works, but I didn’t mind as I was having fun writing them. My stuff always stemmed from really elementary shit like rejection, friendzones, etc. Until one day I just stopped. Days and weeks passed, and I just stopped writing. I mentioned my problem to her and she equated it, ever so brilliantly with life. We all know the saying “Life is like a wheel, sometimes you’re up, sometimes you’re down”. The same goes, in my case, with writing. Sometimes you just create something so epically brilliant that it knocks you down on your ass, and sometimes you create something that you can only use to wipe your ass with. The important thing is to never stop. Regardless of the caliber of what you create, you should never stop.
True enough, she nailed it right. A year or two later, I was churning out lyrics for this crap band I was with… the songs were never good, I mean, people didn’t really go apeshit about them (or our band for that matter), but to me they were fucking gold. To me, they were something I could be proud of. A few months prior I wrote a short story about unrequited love that got published in my high school’s literary folio… that was cool. Though, years later I found that same folio, and read my story, and god-damn that was cheesy. Don’t get me wrong the essence was nice, but the delivery was, oh so cheesy. Still, not that embarrassed about it.
So now here I am. About 2 years since I’ve written something I could be proud of. And I still have nothing. Luckily I’ve been pushed in the right direction with a 12MN deadline and a brief, but hilarious exchange about the growing menace that is WattPad, and the trash it churns out in local Philippine literature-cum-television (i.e. Shes Dating The Gangster, Poser, etc.). I stopped for a long time. And now, I’m just starting back up again. And it feels good. I no longer have a 38-degree fever, I’m on my 2nd bottle of Budweiser, and I had just started on a short story about one of the single-most embarrassing anecdotes in my high school life. Honestly, I can’t help but feel positive.
People should give people more deadlines, often. This is good stuff.