I write. Somedays I spend every spare moment I can wring out of a busy day, pecking away busily at the keys on my laptop. Words pour out of me, magically assembling onto the page. Sometimes I write five pages and am completely happy with the flow and the cadence of the words that I’ve found.
Then, out of the blue, it stops.
Sometimes it’s a conscious break. My days suddenly change. We get up earlier, go to bed earlier. Naptime is sidelined. Errands pile up, cleaning piles up. I miss a day here or there, always telling myself that it’s only temporary. I have to take a day off. There just isn’t time to squeeze it in today.
Othertimes, it’s less conscious. Committments call my name, luring me away from the story-telling that continues in my brain, like an engine that keeps turning over, and over, and over.
All of the sudden, when I sit down to write, the words aren’t there. I stare at the screen for an hour, reading back over what I’ve written previously or focused on that blinking cursor with a blinding intensity.
Days of that monotony begin to pile up. I’m not content with what I’ve written and overwhelmed with the editing that must occur eventually.
I don’t know what causes this cycle. Why does my brain keep repeating the same loop? This has happened before, and it will happen again. Stuck in the mud, unable to move until I close my eyes and climb. Write a ladder. Write a rope. Write an elevator. It doesn’t matter what I write, yet I know I must. There will be other times for editing. When I have the first draft, I can begin to worry about making these miniscule changes that bother me so in the first reading. There will be a second draft. The words that I write are not etched in stone, but they cement an idea.
Like the ancient Romans, I can begin with concrete. Concrete is crude and inexpensive. But when it is dry, I can paint. I can paint wild tapestries, ornate with vivid colors and scenes. I can paint windows that aren’t windows, into worlds that exist only in my mind. I can shape the muddled blobs of my first draft into a real story, IF…
I just write.