Sunday, April 05, 2015

Somewhat of a plea

At school, we were advised to plan essays before launching straight into them. Same went for extended exam answers. You'll probably hear that it's helpful at work or for crafting blog posts too. It's a piece of advice I know would make a lot of sense, were my thoughts and mind rambles in any coherent or logical order so it's a rule that I have avoided like the plague and very often regretted, midway through an essay in an exam when my argument failed to make sense to even its author.

But as I type now, I have set myself one challenge - just type, type to the beat of the Laura Marling album I'm listening to (thankfully for the post it's coincided with some more upbeat tracks or else we might be here til next year and this post would not have been worth waiting for in way shape or form). I've not prepared what I want to say, where I'm headed in this prose, what the purpose even is of me spouting nouns and verbs and adjectives in any which way my fingers decide. (How strange, the track ended and there was silence here and my typing naturally stopped.)

When you're at school, you're guided in all manner of directions (usually forward) via tests, rules and guidance. My schooling was intense in hindsight. I poured most of my existence into academia up until university and I generally knew what I was doing. I did my homework, achieved my grades, went to university and was proud of all of it. But does any of this translate into the real world? Sure it helped me get a good job, instilled great work ethic in me and nurtured curiosity, but beyond that? It isn't helping me now, I'm stuck in this mental state where I feel trapped and don't know what it is that I'm looking for.

Lots of things feel like they're missing. Energy being top of the list and that has zapped the rest. I look back at my blog and admire the drive and commitment I had to making this space work. It was a sanctuary for me and I am proud of what I achieved but I don't always feel like I can give it the same love I did before. I don't want to write any of this. It doesn't make any sense to completely shoot down something that I know brings me so much joy and stimulates my mind and creativity. But I feel like my brain has shrunk, like my opinions on things are feelings not words, and those feelings are trapped in a bottle, are being shaken about but can't make their way out. They're squiggles and lines and patterns. But not words. Words have gone, in a public sense at least. It's almost like the patience I had to craft sentences and paragraphs has disappeared. I don't have the patience to grow into anything and often I find myself blaming social media and my disintegrating attention span. And on the other hand, I feel that I'm living in my own head far too much.

I need some projects and focus. Perhaps I do need a plan after all. And from you, the readers who inspire me with your own words and ideas and who have cared for me with such loyalty over the last few years, I would be eternally grateful for your patience and advice whilst I get myself out of this rut.

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  1. Good luck getting out of your rut. Jo x

  2. the words are just hibernating that's all! And you managed this wonderful, relatable post so you are being far too hard on yourself. Advice? Go old skool! maybe do a baking with beeta or share the work you have done on your scrap book (you have a hidden talent for scrap booking), just have fun and the worry will fade and the words will come! x

  3. This post resonates with me in so many ways I can hardly contain all the “me too, me too, me too’s!” I want to type! You’re absolutely right – at school (and university, and – for me – work), we do a lot of planning and crafting before we put pen to paper. That’s why I enjoy blogging (sporadically, admittedly!): it’s the antithesis to all that structuring and order.

    Words hibernate with me for many, many, many months, which is why I post in such a scattergun approach – lots when I feel like it, not at all when I don’t! So, maybe take the bank holiday weekend to recharge your energy and make it your priority to consume rather than craft. Old fashion books, a good dinner, a long walk: gobble it all up and see what it does for your attention span and craftsmanship. It works for me, and remember – you owe no-one nothing with your blog: it’s a space for you to write in when the words come. Worry not if they’re a little stuttery, or even absent. They’ll come back.