25 October 2011

Three Week Hunger

I seem to have established a blogging pattern of once every three weeks. I know I am breaking all kinds of rules by doing this. First, I should be doing it once a week, second I shouldn't be making a post about how I never post. 

However, I think self-deprecation is necessary at times and particularly revealing about personality. I think my problem is that I tend to overthink my words. I know that this blog is not read by anyone for world advice or creative insight. Though, that is probably anyone's loss. I mean, the reason I am not here every other day is I do not want to waste my and your time on petty stuff. That is not to say people who do blog more regularly are petty just that if I were to blog that often it would be. 

My writing hunger, occurring only in three week intervals is interesting me and I wonder about the cause. I have reached a few theories about why I come back to this when I do:

  • Money. Creativity is a function of contentedness and contentedness is an inverse function of stress. When my bank account is nice and cushiony I have the freedom of mind to write rather than worry about which check needs to clear first.
  • Time. I think I play a pendulum game with my leisure time. I give huge blocks of it away to editing my work, other people's work, my magazine, other people's magazines, political causes, environmental causes and bass guitar solos only to later about-face and drop everything to have some personal time, wherein I write.
  • Sleep. This one I am still working out. I have had about 1000000 good ideas come to me just before falling asleep and had to pry myself from the warm clutches of my bed. This was a bit of a learning curve. I kept promising to myself that I would write the ideas down in the morning. However I started to realize that they were the beginning of dreams, that is REM stuff spilling into the last remnants of consciousness and if I did not write them I would never see them again. So write I did. Jumped out of bed like I was haunted to get them down. Most are still just ideas but I think they are going places. Other times I cannot make a pen move when I am tired. Others I ramble out forever thinking I am writing the next On The Road to come up with an incoherent piece of crap...which I guess is a lot like On the Road. Right now, I am somewhere in between that REM/incoherrent stage. I am definitely tired but my ideas seem to be coming out well. In fact, this late night post which started as just musing on the strange cycles of my work ethic has actually turned into an analytic Ars Poetica. Which is groovy.
  • Decision Fatigue This is some pretty neat new science. It seems to be that the more stuff you have to choose between the worse you get at it. Your mind gets tired and actually stops deciding which usually means defaulting and picking something that was actually picked for you not by you. When it comes to writing there is no default. Every word is a choice and to make even one choice badly can ruin everything. Inhibition certainly plays a part when decision fatigue takes over. How many systems have we derived to work around inhibition? I think of automatic writing, first-thought-best-thought and a rather myriad of mental function inhibitors. Inhibition is just the brain trying to protect you from dying so when you inhibit the brain you take inhibition with it. Neat eh?
So here we have it these are my reasons for avoiding my personal challenges. What are your favorite cop-outs? The first step to recovery is acceptance.

I am not positive about the etymology of the word concerted but it calls to mind the image of many things working together to produce one thing more forceful than simply their sum. This marks the beginning of a concerted effort by my constituent parts to work together to make this blog my writing better than I am probably qualified for.

1 comment:

  1. Favorite cop-out:
    "Oh my god, my to-do list is so long, there's no way I can accomplish everything on it. Way smarter to just give up now than to try getting anything done. I'll just go to bed and work on it in the morning."

    This choice never fails to result in a morning of oversleeping, an entire day spent stressed out about how far behind I am, and the cycle continues.

    So would the better option be to power through the overwhelmed state and start working anyway?