Monday, February 28, 2011

Writing About the Worst Things

Why is it that when I’m going through tough times I cannot write? Not even about the events that are happening. I can’t seem to use my power of communication with myself.

This drives me completely crazy. Perhaps, I need to view it as if I’m speaking to someone else, like I do when I blog – write a letter to an unseen audience, just don’t publish it.

Whenever I’m writing to the world in general, I can speak my mind, say what I have to say quickly, expediently and I think, meaningfully. So, as I write out my problems, I think I’ll begin to express myself to you – my invisible friends. Yet, you’ll never know.

I think, sometimes, that I might avoid writing about issues because nothing is more real to me than things that are written. If it hits paper or a medium like this – a blog - for me, it exists; at least in the author’s mind. By avoiding putting it in words, I pretend something doesn’t exist.

This is probably the exact opposite of how most people see it. Written words are fantasy or unreal to so many others.

But, I’m lucky. I have the ability to express myself without too much effort or pain. Why should I deny myself this tool? When I’m working through a situation, I find I dream solutions all the time. So, I’ve obviously adapted a way to tell myself what I need to know. Yet, a writer writes.

So, I vow here and now, to communicate with myself when times get tough. I will force myself to journal daily. I’ll sit down to Toby, my computer, and let the clarity come. I think it may be a sign of maturity as a wordsmith (my favorite term lately) to have realized this flaw and move forward on addressing it.


  1. I am much the same way. When I'm stressed, depressed, or otherwise feeling an emotion to some sort "extreme," I struggle to write.

    I know that for myself, a lot of it comes from the fact that during these times, I have SO much swimming around in my head that it actually becomes somewhat exhausting to try to write it out. It's as though I can't keep up with myself, or something... Maybe there's just too much to get out, or maybe I feel as though I've already been working on a piece about it because it's constantly on my mind, so by that point I actually feel like I'm rewriting.

    Who knows. But you're absolutely right - as a writer, I should embrace my ability to communicate and express myself rather than avoid it.

    Great post!

  2. oddly enough or perhaps not oddly writing is one of the strategies used therapeutically to gain self awareness or deal with a loss situation or depression. So use what you've got and write that angst out of your system :)

  3. It's interesting, I've had the opposite problem for years, especially with poetry. I seemed to write much better, more clearly, from pain than from happiness. What I wrote when happy, especially when "in love" could put anyone into sugar-shock. But I found insight and lessons in painful times that translated to the writing I found most compelling.

    So, my path over the years has been the inverse: finding ways to "tone down" the happiness into something real, which is often bittersweet.

    Thanks for the post...good thoughts.