On Not Writing

Something interesting that I have found about writing is how much I learn about it when I’m not writing.  It may sound counter-intuitive, but I almost always find this to be the case.

Over the summer I was writing nonstop.  I was coming up with poems left and right—I practically wrote what could constitute an entire chapbook in a matter of weeks.  Since then, though, I have been slacking off in the writing world.  Part of that is beyond my control—with an impending move and applying for a few side hustles to make some extra cash as the holiday season sneaks up on us—but some of it is all on me.  I’ve enjoyed laying on my bed and watching Youtube videos a little too much lately (Youtube really does function as a bit of a black hole—it sucks you in and before you know it an hour has passed.  Yikes)..

I’m working on getting back into writing, but I’m also taking a break.  There’s nothing wrong with that.

It’s funny, though, because even when I take a break, I’m still writing.  I’m writing this blog, for example.  I wrote another blog today over on borrowed solace.  Speaking of borrowed solace, we are putting together our fifth issue (I have no idea how we’ve lasted this long, but I’m so incredibly grateful) and each issue involves a lot of writing for all of us as we fine tune bios, introductions, dedications, and the like.

I’m also submitting my writing—I had a poem come out in the Best Emerging Poets of Colorado anthology and have some forthcoming poems in Scarlet Leaf Review—and while I’m getting some acceptances I’m still getting rejections (just got one yesterday, as a matter of fact).  All of this is happening—writing is happening, I guess you could say—while I’m not actually writing.  Well I am, but not really.

It’s a bit confusing. 

I’m coming to learn that this is the life of a writer.  It’s not all writing and editing and revising.  A lof of it is blogging, copywrighting, emailing, journaling, and reading.  It’s being the go to writer at a non-writing job—this week, for example, I wrote up a summary of a tax credit program in Illinois to give to my new boss—and it’s reworking your bio or writing the blurb that goes along with a podcast episode (and trying to come up with a creative episode name that comes out sounding a little cheesy despite multiple attempts to the contrary.)

I find that the type of writing I am doing varies so much that it means I am never not writing, though it does mean that sometimes I am not writing what I want to be writing.

But that’s life, really—you don’t always get to do what you want to do, unfortunately. 

As long as I am still occasionally writing poems or working on a story, I consider that a success.  All the writing in between is a success, too, though for different reasons.

I’m happy writing about not writing, or not actually writing what I want to write, because I know that this will change soon.  For now I am not writing.  At least not in the way I think I should be writing, but sometimes that’s where the best ideas, and the best writing experience, comes from.

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