Writer’s Block Can Suck It

August 26, 2013

(for #njpoet)

It seems like over the course of the past 2 months, every time I’ve opened WordPress my brain has been cock-blocked. I’ll click on “Add New Post” and get as far as writing a title and then…nothing. There was one day where I got about 2 paragraphs in on a Secular Whatever-the-F***-Day-it-is Silliness post. It was gonna be a good one about the Prancercise Goddess and her cameltoe of wonder (seriously, go back and look. But remember, what’s seen cannot be unseen). But then Lil Blue and Mr. Blue Collar both interrupted me with back-to-back “can you use your psychic powers to find the shit I’m looking for” requests. I know it’s hard to believe, but Secular Silliness is work. If I’m interrupted mid-silliness, the flow is gone and I give up.

Well, the part about nothing happening isn’t entirely true. I say my brain has been cock-blocked but it’s really just me blocking myself, isn’t it? That’s probably closer to the truth. It starts with me forgetting that I shouldn’t evaluate my self-worth based on whether or not I can pay my phone bill this month. I get anxiety because I have no phone and one less connection to people around me. Planning our days becomes more difficult. I have to tell people my phone isn’t on so they don’t think I’m ignoring them. Usually, I’m not embarrassed by saying I’m broke. But this time it’s different.

Because it isn’t really about not being able to pay my phone bill. It’s about whether or not I feel successful. It’s about whether or not I can call myself a writer.

I want to say here that I’m not looking for validation from you all right now. This isn’t about whether any of you think I’m any good at stringing words together in a way you find entertaining or informative. I know some of you like what I do and that is ridiculously flattering, encouraging, and humbling. I also know some of you think my writing and/or opinions are shit. I appreciate that, too, in a very special way.

When people ask me what I do, I usually just say I’m a stay at home mom. Now that I’ve been writing for The BQ Brew, I’ll pause and then say something like I’ve been doing a little bit of writing here and there. I’ve never just immediately said, “I’m a writer.”

I tell myself things like, “When I see my name in print, then I’ll feel like a REAL WRITER.” The feeling doesn’t come. Then I say, “When I get paid to write something, then I’ll be a REAL WRITER.” Still nothing. Because I don’t think I’m good enough.

My friends are some of the greatest writers I’ve ever read. And they’re just genuinely intelligent, decent, kind people. They’re awesome in the truest sense of the word. When I’m around them I feel like a kid being allowed to sit at the grownup’s table for the first time at Xmas. Most of the time this is inspiring and pushes me to move forward and try harder. But other times, I feel inexperienced, naive, tiny. Childish. This is not their fault. They encourage me to believe in myself. Hmmm…

I believe I have the ability to read more, know more and do more. I believe I can try harder. I believe I can be more consistent and less selfish (because my bad thoughts are really just me feeling sorry for myself, and that’s what selfishness is, in the end). I believe that I’ll always have kind people around who will give me a boost when I need it most.

Maybe most importantly, I believe that someday I might be able to think of myself as a REAL WRITER. Maybe even a decent one. For now, I’m going to be happy with “Trying To Be A Writer” as a job description.