Slight Return From A Slight Break
Last month there were 27 posts at this place. This month none, until this one. I’m not sure it is a case of quality versus quantity, as a load of posts isn’t necessarily great and this post is unlikely to be blogging gold as it is far from a considered, planned, worth-the-wait missive.
There are those “Sorry I haven’t been posting!” posts, that are generally pretty horrific. And then the “Sorry I haven’t been posting, but I will be soon!” which are often even worse. And then there are the worst posts of all, where the author acknowledges the futility of writing about not writing, or not really writing about not writing but pretending to write anyway, and ties themselves up in knots of nothing-writing that is even less fun than just not writing at all. And certainly no fun for the reader. You know, posts like this one.
October felt like a bit of a sprint, or a building of momentum, or something similar, something like that. All those walk to the station posts helped. The exercise was a fun one in and of itself, making me more aware of my environment, giving me the opportunity to write about the everyday in a (hopefully) fun way, and play around with a deliberately restrictive format, trying to find new angles each morning. That sort of writing exercise also seemed to clear my head, get my writing muscles warmed up and generally made me want to write more.
The end of the month seemed a natural end-point for that, but I think I might revisit the concept at some point, as there was still a fair amount to write about, and will probably continue to be as the seasons change and the surroundings do too. I have one or two other ideas for regular, daily posts to inflict on you all too. I think the fact it got me writing made it worth it, even if the results varied. Routine. Routine. Routine.
So, when I stopped the walking-to-station stuff I ground to a halt. Briefly, I guess. I have a few ideas for posts, for what it is worth, but need to find the time to properly devote to them. Throwaway posts are much easier.
And work and life get in the way, don’t they? And that great novel of our times doesn’t get written, even during NaNoWriMo.
And sometimes so much stuff happens that I’d like to write about but I know that I’d just get in the way of the writing. There’s been a run of people I know, or once knew, dying over the past month. A couple of them died well before their time. While I wasn’t hugely close to any of them, or had drifted away from them in recent years, their deaths affected me. They were just good people from my past.
And soon I went from wanting to mark their deaths in some way to realising I’d just end up writing about their life from my perspective, that it would become all about me, and that was no way to pay tribute. And falling into that particular rabbit-hole of self-consciousness is hardly conducive for doing anything, doesn’t help anyone and doesn’t feel right. It might read like a really misplaced call for sympathy, or a cheap way of getting people to read a blog, or just a rather self-centred view of death. All. About. Me.
And maybe that is the thing. Real writers who write and write don’t hold back. They draw from life however they can and don’t/can’t care about the possible consequences, real or psychic.
This week I ended up writing a short piece about one of the people who had died, for a tribute/memorial thing being put together. I think it helped get some of those concerns out of my head, and more importantly will hopefully mean something to someone who reads it. And it is better off published there than here.
Now it is time to get back to writing the usual old bollocks. A couple of weeks off never hurts. Onwards. Upwards. Etc. Until the next break.
Sorry for your losses. I went on a blogging hiatus at nearly the same time for the exact same reason.
Thanks Mike, and I’m sorry for yours too. Crappy, isn’t it?
It is crappy. But welcome back to the blogosphere, I guess!
Sorry to hear there has been sadness and loss. It is valid to write from ones own perspective about people we have known and lost, if only because our own relationship with a specific individual is itself individual so you’d be sharing some pieces of a person others knew but not quite as you knew them. And there could be catharsis in the writing. I do know the dilemma you describe, though, Steve, that all about me thing. It’s your blog, however, so what else would people expect to find but your take on events for good, for ill or for passing the time? Thinking of you my friend. Hope the rest of the year is gentler.
Thank you, and some really good points to mull over! I think perhaps the odd part is that these were people I was no longer close to, so it can feel a little phoney. In each case it was sad news, but I felt more for those really close for them than actually grieving myself, if that makes sense. A funny old business!
Grief is such a complex emotion it’s no wonder we rarely know how to express it properly. Take care Steve.