Reverb 10 – December 2 Prompt – Writing. What do you do each day that doesn’t contribute to your writing — and can you eliminate it? (Author: Leo Babauta)
I saw this question and groaned. What kind of question is that? What do you do each day that doesn’t contribute to your writing? Everything I do contributes to my writing. Every little “ooooooh shiny” thing I see/encounter contributes to my writing. Not a day goes by that I don’t have something to write about. I’ve got a back log of blog posts either stored up in my head or my notebook, and a slew of half written posts.
I’ve got half written posts about Tour de Cure’s I rode in, races I raced in, movies I saw, my gluten free Thanksgiving dinner, dreams, all kinds of different stuff. It’s been a slow year in the writing realm.
The right question would be “what keeps you from writing?”
At work, it’s always about asking the right question. When you ask the right question, you get the answers that help you, but there can be many good questions along the way that may not be the right question. The good questions always help lead the the right question though, and now, we have the right question.
What keeps me from writing?
That’s an easy question. I spend anywhere between 8-12 hours a day on the computer at work. Long lost are the days where I found joy in spending my nights at home on the computer as well. When I get done with work my desire to turn on a computer and write is non existent. I want nothing more than to chill and let my mind settle. Read a book, take a bath, watch a movie, go for a run. Mostly do anything that requires no thought. Writing, for me, often is mindless, but it takes time. Mostly I can just start off with something and then go on and on and on, but eventually, I have to narrow the flow of mental vomit that’s pouring out onto the screen and focus. That’s when good stuff comes out. When I can pick from what comes out a single line to expand upon.
But that sometimes leads to another issue that keeps me from writing. Because sometimes, I want to write, but I have to filter. Or rather, I feel the need to filter. I have a friend, she once said, “Courtney, not everything that pops into your head needs to come out of your mouth” and that has kindof carried over into my writing. Mostly lately, I’m irritated and angry, and I could write about that, but not everything that pops into my head needs to be written, on my blog that is, but that shouldn’t keep me from journaling those thoughts. But writing is slower than typing, and it still takes time and effort and that’s just not something that I want to apply at the end of my day.
Yes, the problem isn’t that I’m at a lack for things to write. I have much to say, if you ever saw me in person or talked to me on the phone, you’d see that I have problems shutting up. I can go on and on and on and on. And it’s funny, because the way I write, that’s how I talk too. I jump from one thought to the next. And if I wasn’t in front of a computer all day I could go on and on and on, on my blog or in a journal. I could write forever. No, it’s not about doing things that don’t contribute to writing, living life is what writing is all about. It’s those life experiences that spawn the thoughts that eventually become prose The problem lies in taking the time to write at the end of a long day after sitting in front of the computer all day long.