More Ramblings : 9/2

The caffeine culture is starting to make more sense to me now. I’ve been experimenting not only with the drink the culture is synonymous with but also engaging with the process of imbibing myself with caffeine as I attempt to create something. This café is filled even in the afternoon as I try to deal with my incompetency in writing. However, as I glance around, I can see that everyone here is peddling his or her trade. As such, I myself am learning to endure. I see students here obsessing over memorizing materials from textbooks, artists scratching work and fixing imperfections, coders leaning over screens as they exchange thoughts. Earlier as I was waiting on my drink, I could overhear what looked like a book club with its members scurrying like squirrels and chatting about the content of the latest material. Meanwhile I could only think: in what way am I entitled to not be creative and not just create content? Writer’s block would be a valid excuse but right now, what I’m lacking isn’t the flow of inspiration but rather the initiative to undergo the brutal process that is creation. Instead my mind is wandering looking for an alternative from the stretching of its capacity to write something applying my own voice. However, this café and its very essence of promoting creation constantly batter me, reminding me that the reward isn’t compensated without the effort first.

So what exactly is a writer’s block? I believe that there are several applications of this terminology and as such, the true meaning has become muddled. Even now, as I think of the word and the multiple implications, I cannot pinpoint the actual definition. On an Ontic level, it is the abstract impediment of writing. However, is it the impediment of writing in general or creating a specific type of writing? Writing for the sake of writing I would argue is hardly writing at all. And even within specific writing, even with applied relevance, is the writing something that is productive and pushes the writer to create something that is more than just a block of text? Right now, I could easily spew a chain of words that would be on point with the intent of this paragraph, but that doesn’t necessitate that it will contribute to the writing as a whole. For example, the previous sentence itself could have been omitted. Based on this, am I truly writing? I can see the blinking of my text cursor as I input new information, which would validate that I am indeed “writing”. However, am I writing or am I just putting words together?

To further analyze this, let’s look beyond the action of writing and rather at its result and reason: the text itself. At what point does text become more than just black and white words that have been consecutively put together to make a coherent logical statement, question, or declaration? Words each carry their own meanings but the composite is the meaning that the readers will analyze. Although each word can carry different nuances, the sentence itself will align the meanings. So the writing itself should automatically self-identify with a certain logical statement (assuming that it follows the standard rules of grammar and syntax.) So if writing can be attributed to following a specific formula that will guarantee a translation of a meaning, at what point does the writing itself become something that inspires?

Certainly the intent of the writing itself is based on the writer himself, but does that imply that the writer is the one who bends both the craft of writing and its medium of text? Or is instead that the writer is the person created from the action of writing itself? Or is it a similar case to the chicken and the egg, in which the origin itself isn’t important rather than the cyclical ambiguity?

Already I can see that I am only purporting questions without giving any of my own insights or what I believe to be the solution. To be frank, I don’t know any of the answers to these questions, or at least that my answers will have truth-value to them. But all the same, I will explain my understanding.

Writing is the craft of beginning with a set motif and bending words and order to create meanings that are not only relevant, but strategically enforce certain points to constantly align the readers to what the author is saying. Without its start, its end, or its middle contents unifying to create a certain meaning, words cannot be assigned a life of value and transform into a writing of substance. So yes, writing is an applied craft that takes several creations and several failures.

Yet writer’s block will always be present. It is both the enforcer and the validation. It will be cruel in its delight to obfuscate the purpose of writing. Earlier I stated that it was an abstract concept. Yet its attempt to strangle your aspirations and ambitions will be oh-so-visceral and tangible. It metaphorically will wrap its hands around your throat and seek to throttle you to the point that it transforms from an abstract and manifests itself into reality.

It also is the validation that will reward your efforts. Should you be able to conquer the immense ass that is writer’s block, you will see your writings flourish and transform past just a string of words put together.

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