The Joys and Pains of Writing

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Sharpener, pencil, and shavings on a blank notebook - The Joys and Pains of Writing - You Need Life Skills

The Frustration

Writing is the work.

And I haven’t been doing the work.

I feel miserable and frustrated when I don’t think I’m writing enough. And though the blog has been a great way for me to write constantly, I think I’m afraid.

I know some of the people who are reading the blog. Being naked and exposed to strangers isn’t nearly as scary as being naked and exposed to people I know. So, I’ve hidden.

Hidden from writing about the trauma of getting a second job rejection letter. Many of the jobs I’ve applied to have not sent rejection letters but this one did and it hurt. It hurt because it is easy to see it as a rejection more than a re-directing “no” and more like a rejection of me as a human.

Hidden from trying to figure out what to do with my life. I have time to write my book for example. Why don’t I want to sit and write it out? It’s important that it exists. So why don’t I do it?

The War of Art

I’m in the middle of Steven Pressfield’s “The War of Art” and it’s really a book that I couldn’t have read before starting this blog and writing. It wouldn’t have made any sense to me and I would have walked away, thinking it was well written but not really for me.

Oh, it’s DEFINITELY for me.

The major premise of the first two-thirds of the book is that every creative exercise runs into something called “Resistance”. It’s a seductive urge to not do the thing you know you should be doing. It’s bigger than procrastination. It’s bigger than doing other, more important thing. It’s the feeling that you’ll die if you don’t do it perfectly, so you don’t do it at all.

And maybe that’s what the blog has become sometimes for me. Even at this early stage.

I’ve taken several courses on running a blog, on copywriting, on social media and I’ve loved learning. At the end of the day, however, this blog won’t be the perfection I had wanted to create because…I’m not perfect.

Blog Rules

Your blog is to stay within a particular genre.

This one won’t.

Your blog is a perfect vehicle to sell a product or service.

Bless all the people who do that. It’s much harder than it looks and I’m just trying to write consistently and get in the habit of making sure I provide value to you.

Your blog isn’t to be too personal to make people uncomfortable.

Well…I see this isn’t gonna work out in the way you want.

I read Seth Godin’s blog every day. And bless him, he blogs EVERY SINGLE DAY. And I was doing that too. Until I started reading sites that said I shouldn’t because people wouldn’t be able to catch up and that it was super hard to do and I should focus on long-form content. And SEO. And all 8 million other things that the great bloggers do.

But I gain joy from writing every day. And since I’m a woman who adores structure and routine and purpose, this floating around, writing whenever hasn’t been working out so well for me.

So, I’m writing with purpose. That purpose is for us to get to know one another. For us to be happy and sad together in this space. For both my friends now and my friends in the future to be able to learn about me and the things close to my heart. And that we walk together, through this earth, learning life skills.

Life is too short.

Life is too short for me to over-complicate things. A friend of mine died a year and a half ago and I’m still in disbelief that he won’t message me and tell me he’s proud of the blog but I should put a naked pic in a post. You know, just to make sure the people are reading.

I will die. And thinking so hard about writing the perfect blog post every single time means that I shy away from writing any blog post.

Not. The. Plan.

So, I’m committed to the idea that this blog will exist. It makes me happy.

Honestly, that’s it. It makes me very very happy that I’m writing and people as far as Australia, the Philippines, Morocco, Canada, Trinidad and Tobago, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Barbados, St. Lucia, The Bahamas, Thailand, Argentina, The Dominican Republic, Switzerland, and the United States of America are reading. Even more epic is that people right here in Jamaica are reading what I write.

That is the joy right there. I just have to trust that the rest will sort itself out.

I’m happy to get to know you all. And I’m hoping to make sure that we meet up much more often to make this connection even stronger.

Be kind to yourself because sometimes you can forget and hurt yourself. 

Signature of Yoo Need More Jodi in blue - You Need Life Skills

2 thoughts on “The Joys and Pains of Writing

  1. *hugs* That part about feeling like you’ll die if you don’t do it perfectly? Yes. That is exactly what it feels like, but it sounds really stupid to people who don’t need to write. I’ve had this dull ache in my chest for about two weeks, and I know it’s because I’m not writing any of the things I want to write. I haven’t been doing the work either. I had a really good streak, then it came to the part where I was actually supposed to sit and write the damn thing, and I just couldn’t do it, because I knew it wouldn’t look anything like it did in my head, when I finally put it down on paper. I’ve set a goal to get a first draft out by December, though, so I’m going to have to fight my way out of this paper bag pretty damn soon. I adore reading about your journey, and I know it’s scary to be so open about that. I’m really grateful, though. Writing, and making an earnest effort at anything we’re not born knowing how to do, are really lonely things. I’ve scoured the web for first drafts of works I adore, just to reassure myself that when people say “write a terrible first draft”, they actually know just how terrible mine is, and they’re not talking about something a lot better than I’m capable of producing in a first draft, or something. Thank you for sharing, darling. ^_^

    1. Thank you so much for reading, Roxanne! It was your recommendation of “The War of Art” that got me here and allowed me to take a good look at all the things I say I want to be doing but am not actually accomplishing.

      Thank you for being out there and connecting with what I write. It means the absolute world to me! You just need to do the work, darling. Give your craft the time to blossom to get your writing to the place you want you be. You won’t get there if you write once every “inspired” moment. *hugs*

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