Sunday, August 17, 2014

Writer's Block

I would have written this post 20 minutes ago, but I decided I needed ice cream, and had to go to the store. I wish I were kidding.  That's what the last month or so has been like.

My vacation is over.  The original plan for the vacation was to write.  This is not quite go as planned.  The setting was fine, the chairs were fine (see previous entry), the computer worked fine, but I just sat in front of it and stared.  The cursor on the blank page would wink at me, mock me until I would cave and watch just one more episode of Seinfeld.  This happened for days before I walked away, having decided that agonizing over it would just ruin my vacation and make me more miserable. 

I've been so out of practice with the act that I didn't know how to handle writer's block.  Quite frankly, I didn't even recognize it for what it was when it happened.  Writer's block was something that happened to other people, to real writers.  It didn't happen to a girl like me, someone who just taps out their thoughts and frustrations on the weekend.  It doesn't happen to me*.  If I had seen it for what it was, I could have googled and read a bunch of garbage other people had written about it.  I could easily have wasted an afternoon doing that.  It would have felt more productive than what I was doing.

It was a good vacation, not a great one.  The end of the vacation was marked by a remarkable first date. We met for drinks, followed by coffee and a stroll in the park.  The date lasted 5 hours, with promises to see each other again.  We had our fourth date last night, which included just sitting together and listening to Mike Oldfield. 

Our musical tastes overlap so much, it's frightening.  At one point, I thought he was pulling my leg when he told me Death Cab for Cutie** was one of his favourites.  There's still a lot of great stuff we can show each other, not just in music, but in general as well.  I could go on and on about him, but I've probably said too much.  He makes me smile.  We might go camping this weekend.  

Everything's been going well enough in my life that I almost feel I've had little to write about.  I have stepped back a little. There's a brilliant moment in the 1937 movie Lost Horizon, where Edward Everett Horton is trying to write, but the writing is awful, because he only has nice things to write about Shangri-La (for context: they've crash landed their plane in paradise).  It's a delicious problem to have, really.  

*mad libs moment: leading up to the asterisk in this paragraph, replace "writer's block" with your choice of STI.  For example: "I've been so out of practice with the act that I didn't know how to handle genital warts."
**Last week, Chris Walla announced he's leaving Death Cab.  I was gutted, honestly, but he's still young (they all are), and his best work may still be in front of him. It will be interesting to see how Death Cab's sound changes as well. Not only are they losing a great songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, but I'm not sure if he'll continue producing for them.