Back to Basics

Why am I here?

Ah, an existential question. So healthy at 10:30 at night, right?

Well, I’m not really asking the ultimate “why am I here?” That’s not a nut I want to crack. Instead I’m asking why I’m here on the internet writing in this blog. Why did I start this little project almost a year ago?

Because I love writing.

I’ve often lamented on this digital space how I feel like my writing gets chopped to bits in the meat grinder of life. I can’t focus on it like I want to, not with 80+ kids needing to be educated, a super demanding boss, cakes to be decorated, and the fact that I don’t have a dishwasher in this new apartment. I have to do all my dishes by hand!

Seriously though, I think it’s easy to get caught up in life. And I also think it’s easy to get caught up in the shiny parts of writing and forget why you’re really here.

I think I’ve gotten caught up in the wrong things with writing. I’ve been putting a lot of pressure on myself to make a product. I want a book so badly. I’ve been close, so close I could practically feel the pages between my fingers, only to be let down. I’ve thought millions of time I had something worthwhile only to be shove it onto my hard drive to collect dust. I’ve long day dreamed seeing my book on a shelf in the Tattered Cover. I yearn like a blue collared worker in a Springsteen song who simply dreams of more.

But the focus isn’t the book. The focus should be me.

Now as self-centered as that sounds, it’s kind of true. Books come and go and it’s the writer that remains. I think of prolific people like Joyce Carol Oates, who produces a book a year. JCO puts the book on her shelf and continues to the next one.

I put a lot of stock in my first book since it’s my dream, my heart, and a thread of my soul I put out into the world. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but when I lose sight of myself as a writer in exchange for tunnel vision on one work, I’ll get nowhere. I say that I don’t want to write just one type of novel. I fear being boxed in as a writer more than anything, but the pressure I put on myself to work on a designated assignment created it’s own cage.

I think that’s why I rode the struggle bus for so long. I think that’s why I lost the zest for my story. I lost my knowledge of myself as a writer. I lost my love of just plain writing.

This blog seems to be my platform for constantly resolving to be better; I’ll spend less money, I’ll eat healthier food, I’ll make promises and goals that expand my horizons and make for semi-interesting reading. I seem to always want to improve, but yet I feel like I get nowhere.

Basically these blog-ramblings are my way of saying that I need to take a breath, take some of the pressure off myself, and just write. Write what I want. Write because it’s fun. Write to see what happens. Write a something that heals my personas bruises. Write something that heals someone else’s.

There’s no timeline and no expectations. The only thing to do is write.


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