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Monday, February 6, 2012

Writing Day

"Many people hear voices when no one is there. Some of them are called mad and are shut up in rooms where they stare at the walls all day. Others are called writers and they do pretty much the same thing." - Margaret Chittenden

I designated an entire day over the weekend as my Writing Day. It was going to be a perfect day for the written word, for churning out interesting and captivating articles and essays, for letting the creative juices flow through my fingertips and onto the keyboard, a day with no other obligations or appointments. I had been scribbling notes on random pieces of paper all week, occasionally typing out a rough outline, but on this day, it would all come together. This day was WRITING DAY.

I woke up at 8:45 that morning, feeling pleased that I woke up naturally at such a decent hour. Perfect for Writing Day!

By 9:15am, I had my lap top open, and the rough draft document in front of me. Here we go. Let the writing begin...

Any second now...

Really, aaaaaaany moment...

Wait for it...

While I waited for the focus and motivation and words to come to me, I did the following:

Had a nice long catch-up chat with my mom

Had a short catch-up chat with my best friend, Kate

Opened up the stack of mail that had been ignored all week long

Paid a couple of bills

Refreshed Facebook and email at semi-regular intervals

Grazed on spring rolls, Gardein Chipotle-Lime Strips, and Medjool dates throughout the day

Took time to really listen to the wind chime outside

Played with headbands

Hula hooped to bittersweet indie songs while wearing a mud mask

Cursed at Pandora for playing too many "thumbs down" songs, thus preventing me from giving any MORE thumbs down

Marveled at the greatness that is Bragg's Liquid Aminos

Piddled around on the Internet

Watched Justin Timberlake videos on youtube (I don't know how that happened)

Gave thanks for yoga pants

Texted a couple of friends about my so-called "Writing Day," rambling about all the distractions throughout the day, all while further distracting myself by texting friends

All the while glancing at the rough draft and feeling a little bitter that the words weren't coming to me, that the focus hadn't set in. Why is it that the words come like a thunderstorm when I have to be somewhere in 10 minutes? I set aside an entire day for this! Where are the words?!

Eventually, I left to meet up with my good friend, Lisa, for tea and chat. I knew I had to walk away from the computer. I knew I needed a change of scenery. I knew some human interaction and some conversation would distract me from the need to write. I can't force the perfect words to flow. I just have to wait.

At 11pm, I sat back down at the computer, and set to work.

There was no strike-of-lightning feeling, no sudden power surge, no "OH MY GOSH! I'M WRITING! OH, THESE BRILLIANT WORDS!" I just sat down, and started typing, and by 12:30 that night, one article was done. Mission accomplished.

And this is why you don't see daily content on Hungry Vegan Traveler right now. I cannot force good (by my standards) writing out of me. It has to happen naturally. If blogging was my only job, I could probably write near-daily, but I have a full-time job, and heaps of volunteer projects on the side, and other creative projects on top of that. This is why Vegan MoFo 2011 was a failure for me (though, at the time, I was also disconnected from the interwebs, which just added another HUGE hurdle).

But don't let this post fool you. I love to write. I really, truly do. I love my blog and I love connecting with readers and other bloggers. If I could do THIS as my full-time job, I would.

So, with all this said, feel free to contact me to write a guest post for YOUR blog. Or to offer me a rockin' paid writing position. Either / or.

Because I always need more excuses to hula hoop watch pop videos on youtube eat large quantities of dates embrace the creative writing process.

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