When things get in the way…

Some days I do just find it impossible to write. Illness currently is the barrier that has presented itself, so that even when I do manage to get myself upright enough to work on the laptop my brain is fuzzy and the words can’t make themselves heard.

Over the past year or so I’ve had to reprioritise my life rather drastically, which led me to the conclusion that writing is something I wanted to do but somehow never made time for. I came to understand that the most important step I could take was to slow down and attempt to place writing at the core of my life. I’m still struggling to do this, as old habits die hard and I find myself slipping back into the work-driven behaviour that led to my demise in the first place.

More positively, I now have a goal to strive for. While I may infrequently neglect to write my one sentence a day each and every day, it is the ambition to do so that pushes me onward and gives me strength to believe that I can move forward and, some time in the near future, progress on that novel that I keep locked away in my mind. I find that when I do sit down to write that one sentence I can often write more, therefore I am exceeding my goal and, interestingly, my own expectations. Thus, when I do miss that occasional day, I can look back and not consider it a complete failure because this exercise is encouraging me to write more than I ever did in any other attempt to create a writing routine.

So let things get in the way. Because invariably they will, it is what life is all about. I’m learning, however, that when things do get in the way I can deal with them and return to my task with renewed vigour, rather than automatically assuming I have failed or let myself down in some way. Life will sometimes create situations whereupon my priorities will have to shift and only by being flexible about this will I be able to maintain my ambition and be true to my desire to write.

Besides, at the end of the day, those troublesome events that life can throw at you to cause you to veer off course can make for the most interesting of narrative beginnings…

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2 responses to “When things get in the way…

  1. It’s always encouraging to see others facing, and overcoming, the same challenges I encounter every day. Thanks for sharing, Cat.

    Unfortunately, I’m defeated on a regular basis. Obstacles like watching any number of movies, even if for the umpteenth time, or staring into space are getting the best of me still. I’ll see if your one sentence philosophy can yield better results.

    I just read a similar article with a one-sentence structure as the core exercise. http://bardicblogger.wordpress.com/2011/06/18/writing-pitfalls-the-pressure-trap/ Might have some other useful stuff in there since it doesn’t seem like we’re alone in our pursuit for motivation.

  2. “Besides, at the end of the day, those troublesome events that life can throw at you to cause you to veer off course can make for the most interesting of narrative beginnings… ”

    Couldn’t have said it any better 🙂

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