10 Years of Writing Without a Break
At the risk of sounding ignorant, I never understood those people who needed to take breaks from writing. Like what are you really taking a break from? This is supposed to be something you love, something you’re passionate about. Why would you ever want to stop.
I’ve been writing professionally for ten years now. Ten long years. I can remember starting off on Blogspot and sites like Suite101. Those were fun days trying to figure out what the hell I was doing. The only thing I really cared about back then was getting my voice out. I wasn’t writing about any one topic in particular, just writing.
I went those entire ten years without ever taking a significant break from writing. By significant, I mean I never went more than two weeks (and probably never even got to two weeks) without writing something meaningful. That’s a long time. Probably too long. And that’s why something had to change.
A few months ago, I decided to stop. My novel was done, I paused my clients (I’m blessed to be able to do that), and I just stopped. I wasn’t sure what to expect. More than a few times, I picked up my Chromebook and thought about getting back at it. But I always stopped myself. I stopped myself because I knew it was the right thing for me to do.
I actually should’ve done it sooner. As a writer, or any artist for that matter, you have to be an observer. You’re creating pieces that either mirror the world around you or predict it. You can’t do either of those things if you aren’t feeling. And to feel at the level you need to in order to create great art, you need to be vulnerable. You need to be present.
I realized I was neither of those things, not at the level I needed to be if I wanted to tell great stories. I needed to be more entrenched in the culture as an onlooker, a participant. Otherwise writing about what I see, whether I fictionalize it or not, wouldn’t get deep enough into the subject to make it connect. Taking those few months off allowed that to happen.
It wasn’t till about a month ago when I felt good about making the lateral move back into this world. My vision is the same but my perspective on how to see that through has changed. I can’t tell you how good I feel writing this right now. I can’t wait to keep sharing my experiences through a lens that has been cleared.
And I really don’t know what’s going to become of all this. But that tension, that hint of uncertainty about exactly what subject matter to cover and what words will come out of my mind and onto the page is what’s making this phase of my life so exciting. No promises, guys, except emotion and honesty.