Writing — The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

Everyday I wake up wanting to get the words out of my head on to paper for the world to read. That’s what writer’s do. Unfortunately, fear blocks my fingertips often, which can be paralytic.

As someone who makes her living weaving words into a black and white basket made entirely of type, I often feel as if I’m pushed to explain more of myself. When people ask “what do you do” and I respond with “writer,” they really like my response. However, when I mention I’ve mainly written online since 2002, their faces really say all you need to know: “Oh, so you’re not a real writer, are you?”

At that point, I’d love nothing more than to tell them to bite me, but on the off chance one day I do publish successfully, i’d rather them not be the same folks trolling me online. There are enough of those already.

While I’ve always been a writer, I’ve wondered if my blogging has interfered with my talents. There’s been so much short-form writing, my long-form has taken a back seat and I often find myself struggling to expand the length of what I am working on. It’s a real challenge.

To help, I’m reading more than I have in the past few years and not blogging like I used to — at most 2-3 times per week. The rest of the time is spent in research, sorting note cards and mapping out my travel schedule for book interviews, as the piece I’m currently working on is nonfiction.

I guess you could say writing is like “The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.” We have good ideas and copy, some bad, and there’s always ugly editing, which altogether makes a great product. It’s pretty much a recurrent theme in how we feel about what we’re doing and why we do it, well that and the drive to empty our heads of the words continually seeking a way out.

Lord Byron said it best “If I do not write to empty my mind, I will go mad.” He spoke for every writer, who’s ever written anything. We write, no matter what it is. Even if we do things which interfere with out writing, or change our voice, we are still writers. Nothing is ever perfect, but there is the dream of the perfect sentence — and we will keep writing while trying to create it.