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Writing through the Dumps

July 11, 2010

It’s a pretty prevalent stereotype: the Creator who is so sensitive, and gifted, and special that their poor human neurons can’t take it anymore and melt into a morass of despair.

That’s not me. But nevertheless, I’ve been feeling a little down lately. That’s part of the reason for the increasingly-long gaps between posts (sorry about that, incidentally). I’m hoping it’s more to do with consistently poor sleep than anything else… we’ll see if my theory can be proved.

But it does make me wonder: how did the writers who did fit the cliche do it? How did Sylvia Plath manage to write such amazing poetry before the end? Hemingway and Fitzgerald were both alcoholics and masters of their craft. They say that everything that makes us writers -the sensitivity and such- also makes us more vulnerable to the ups and downs of everyday life. Perhaps it’s an occupational hazard.

So is there any way to work around it, or minimize the effects? Because, speaking for myself, my fingers are lying mute and still on the keyboard. And I don’t think mental angst is a prerequisite for good writing. Think of it this way: how much more would these writers have accomplished if they had lived/not spent hours at the bar/had more time free of the vise-like grip of anguish? We need to find a way to stare down into that abyss, and come back to tell about it, rather than sending postcards from the edge that, while brilliant, keep us too close to the pit for too long.

I’m not going to pretend I have the answer. I don’t. I barely understand any of this myself, and really, I’m just typing all this from the twin guilts of a) not having posted for a while and b) the fact that I just shut down Word after managing a grand total of 4 words.

Wordcount: 4. Must be a new record.

I guess what’s needed is to turn the negative energy into productive energy. Waaay easier said than done. Still, there’s something to be said, for me personally, for leaving all my problems behind to romp in a fantasy world for an hour or two. Plus, my fantasy world is facing the Apocalypse. No matter how bad my problems are, I can safely state that it’s not the end of the world. 

Sorry for the depressing post. Again, I’m sure once I get some decent sleep, I’ll be back to normal… well, as normal as I ever am.  

Staying the course,

Arvik

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