Yoohoo! Anyone out there?
I feel like I’m venturing into a dusty attic when I come to this blog. Not the most flattering portrayal, I know, but it’s quite accurate. Also, I am aware that I keep coming back here to say that I keep forgetting to come back here. So I figured it’s about time to own up to these every-so-often cop out blog posts: I’m rusty. That’s why this place feels like an old dusty attic. It’s filled with memories that I can (figuratively) pick up and read, turn over in my mind and smile/cringe/laugh/get nostalgic about. Lately, when I come here I find myself only reading old posts and not creating new ones. I’m not quite sure when I lost my mojo and became this rusty writer who only comes here to write about how she doesn’t write, and read her old posts with this sense of…longing. I know that sounds dramatic, but it’s true. It’s like I feel like I’ve lost this ‘talent’ (we’ll use that very loosely — don’t think I’m calling myself Caroline Foster Wallace). I feel like writing used to be ‘my thing’ and now it’s not and I don’t know when that happened, and I think for a while I thought I was okay with it, but I realize I’m not okay with it. I’m not okay with the fact that I spent all fours years in college writing and reading and analyzing texts and I don’t do any of that anymore. I don’t write anything. I don’t read as much as I should and would like to, save for our monthly book club book*. I guess what really irks me the most is that writing used to come easy to me, and now it doesn’t. It feels awkward and stumbling and fumbling. I used to people-watch and think about stories I wanted to write. Granted, I never wrote half those stories, but I find I rarely even think like that anymore. I rarely have that thought in my mind that sparks the first few lines of a potential short story. Recently, I went through all of the “Notes” on my iPhone. Buried way back there, way back in the past, were some ideas for stories. Now, my notes are grocery lists, locker combination codes, and names of restaurants I keep meaning to try but always seem to forget to check my Notes when figuring out a place to dine. I digress.
I guess it’s all connected, though. If I’m not reading I’m not inspired to write. If I’m not writing, I’m not inspired to keep writing and reading new material to keep me going. I’ve been out of college for two years this May, and I guess I’m really feeling the distance between the ‘real world’ and college. Sure, I miss the social life at college and all that went with that. But, I did not anticipate my mind to change so much. It’s not like I got less intelligent, or something (I hope not!), but without classes and professors and stimulating classmates, I haven’t pushed myself in the literary realm. I’m in graduate school now, but art school is different and I’m never really asked to write, and if I am, the writing is much overlooked and layout and design are viewed in its place. Which makes sense, but I’m just still not used to it quite yet. And I don’t think I want to be used to it, which is my whole point, I think. Even though I’ve sort of gone through this “change” where I used to think reading/writing was ‘my thing’ and now I’m pursuing a Masters degree in Communication Design, I’m not willing to let go of my ‘original thing.’ And I realize, now, that it was silly of me to think I had to let go of one thing I was good at and loved, to make room for another. But, I did let go, and now I’m rusty and embarrassed and climbing my way back to where I was.
So now what? Do I make (potentially empty) promises to myself to read more and write more? I know myself, and sometimes those promises don’t hold up—read two posts below if you really want to see a good example. I don’t know what I’ll do. Maybe I’ll write and keep things to myself, maybe I’ll write and post here. Maybe I’ll read and not write at all. Maybe I’ll write and not read as much as I want. Maybe I’ve just had a pivotal moment and I’ll be a reading/writing machine. Who knows. (I guess the answer is supposed to be: me, but I’m notoriously indecisive.)
I’d say, what I’m taking away from this evening, is that I spent some time writing and it felt good and bad and weird and nice at the same time and I kind of liked feeling all of those feelings. And I kind of feel like this kind of post belongs on LiveJournal, but I can’t remember my old password, so here it will live on Caroline A Broad.
*I am grateful for our book club for giving me at least once a month of kind of critical thinking about a book. Granted we tend to get distracted by talking about our own lives, at least it forces me to sit down and really think about a book among peers, even if just for a few minutes.