The Writer’s Wheel 4/19/2020: When Rust Creeps into the Gears
Some of us were writing right along and then the coronavirus hit. We hit a snag in our plans. And a bit of rust got on the gears while we tried to weather the storm. However, whenever you’re ready, you might have to go it slow for a while until you hit your stride again.
Go Old School.
Start with five, ten, fifteen minutes. Get a sentence down, some words. Attempt a paragraph. Something to get the writing muscles going again. Set an alarm clock and write to it. It’ll get you thinking about writing even if you don’t actually get anything down. Marathon runners don’t start with ten miles. They start by pacing themselves. Just like you need to do. If it takes staring at the blank screen or paper day after day till your ready, so be it. At least, you’ll be gearing up to do what you do best: write.
Gradually increase your time as you get things down. Double it. Triple it. Write until your emotions are bleeding on the page. Write about what you’re going through now. Keep a diary/a journal of these days. Some writers try sprint writing where you write about anything that comes to mind until something jumps out at you. You narrow that down and run with it.
Getting Back into a Habit.
No one says you have to do it every day. Just as long as you keep consistent with the days you do try to write. Try every other day. Or weekdays and leave weekends free. Some time off recharges you, I find. Not so long that you miss your place though. Of course, if you’ve already been missing where you left of, it helps sometimes to read back through what you’ve got. This’ll refresh your purpose.
Once you catch the spark again, you’ll be going full force before you know it. Honestly, writing helps me to escape. It makes me feel better. About myself. The World. The future. I could no more give it up then breathing. It saved me over a dark period of my life, and I know it can get me through this darkness too. I just have to get in there and let it.
When You Find Yourself Struggling?
Take a break. Don’t push too hard. Maybe it’s not there yet. That’s okay. Rest. Try again when you’re ready. Regardless, if you concentrate on blogging for now or working on your story, it’ll all add up. We don’t know how long we’ll be confined or kept to essential workers only. The truth is, we don’t even know what we’re looking at as part of a “normal” day in the future. As a society, we might have to redefine ourselves. As workers we might have to do the same. Education may shift. Going to the store might shift around.
When those things settle, we should look at how to fit writing into all of that. Does it still fit? Can it be improved? It’s hard to say. Predictions are hard to do. Except if you’re Supernatural apparently. I mean the “prophet” Chuck had it right when he declared to hoard toilet paper in season five during the apocalypse to come as it was going to be “like gold.” Who knew?
Have you started writing again? Never stopped? Let’s us in on where you’re at. Where you’re headed. What you think the future will be like? Robots? Flying cars? Mammoths? A repeat of the caveman age? The ancients coming back into power. Tell us your guesses.
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