Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The ramblings of a writer’s blocked cyclist

I know, I know.  It’s been over a week since my last post.  I wish I had a good excuse.  You know something like my computer died or I was vacationing in the south of France or that I had been in a french toast coma.  But alas, it’s nothing like that at all.  I just can’t seem to get started.  I have things to write about.  I’ve been riding, spending time with Sherry, hanging with friends and work doesn’t completely suck so life is good.  I’ve got about 15 blog titles created there’s just nothing inside them.  Damn I hate writer’s block.

So I am trying something new.  It’s my I-haven’t-posted-in-a-while-so-I-guess-I-better-get-off-my-ass-and-write plan.  Too long?  Ok, how about the just write dammit plan?  Hmmm. . .I can already see this isn’t going to work.

I’ve got it!  I’ll think about all of the great riding I’ve been doing lately.  That’s it.  I’ll write about how much stronger I’m feeling these days or how  I went on Coach Tim’s second Wine Country Cols and Pavé ride, which was  a 60-mile heat fest.  That was adventurous, and beautiful, but I wouldn’t call it fun so nothing to really write about.  I climbed Sonoma Mountain on Saturday pushing a 42x27 (that’s a pretty tough gear for you non-cyclist out there) which is a huge accomplishment for me.  And although that really got the blood flowing as my heart rate climbed, it did not unleash my writing.

Maybe I should take a scientific approach.  You know, analyze the situation, create a hypothesis  about the cause, and then develop a plan of action.  I actually Googled writer’s block and found some interesting stuff.  There’s even a Wikipedia entry devoted to it.  Here’s their definition - Writer's block is a condition, associated with writing as a profession, in which an author loses the ability to produce new work.

Well, that’s problematic.  Writing is not my profession.  Can you get writer’s block if you are not a professional?  If the answer is no, then what do you call it when a non-professional is stuck?  Poser’s block?  Wanna-be writer’s block?  Blogger’s block?  Do professionals with writer’s block roll their eyes and sigh when they overhear a blogger talking about being stuck.

However, there may be something to this.  You see while I am not a professional writer today, I do harbor visions of making money from my writing in the future.  My goal is to have my writing supplement my income after I retire.  This blog is part of that grand plan and that creates pressure, which in turn leads to blocks.

The pressure comes from within.  For some odd reason, I feel that each blog needs to be better then the last.  Not only is that unreasonable, it’s unnecessary.  To begin with, I already know that this series of posts has not been one long crescendo which each post being better.  I also know that people have different tastes so that a post that I particularly like and feel is clearly better then the last one is not seen that way by others.  In many cases I have received more comments on what I would consider my more mundane blogs.

I am also aware that a blog needs to be consistent to attract followers.  That’s more pressure.  Everyday I go without writing makes it even harder to get started.  Somehow, I’ve got to find a way to quit putting so much pressure on myself and go back to writing for the fun of it.  Hey, maybe that’s what I should call my plan.

Whatever it is I hope it goes away soon.  I enjoy telling stories, in writing and otherwise, and I would like to get back to it.  For now, I’ll just keep plugging along and trying to come up with a real post for your reading, and my writing, pleasure.

Until then . . .


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