WRITING: That Listless Feeling…
February 14, 2012
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My biggest impediment to is not writer’s block. With writer’s bl0ck, I am quickly learning that there are often strategies to fight it. For example, in writing a script earlier this week, exploring the why of my writer’s block led me to add a scene to the script that it turns out was sorely needed, which led to me progressing at great speed. More frustrating than being stopped on a specific piece of writing is a feeling that often interrupts my life for hours or days at a time, forcing me to wade through a life with no spark: ennui.
It’s that feeling that often masquerades as boredom, but there’s something more vicious about this pest: it removes all colour or interest from any task you might want to pursue, forcing you to go through the motions with whatever you may decide to accomplish. Ennui is like being bored and tired and hopeless all at once, and seemingly has no cause. It won’t prevent you from living your life, but creative ventures seem hopeless, and it can even get in the way of enjoying fun fluff activities like video games or watching TV. It will settle on you out of nowhere, and the only cure I’ve found it to fight through it and try a thousand different tasks, until one helps break through the fog.
Often, it will fade on its own. Your eyes will catch the sparkle in a character’s dialogue, or a swoonworthy scene idea, and the fog will lift. I do not know whether these moments are the key to defeating it, or merely the first sign it has decided to leave of its own volition.
It sucks. But it’s a reminder that the creative act is something akin to magic. We can’t ever take it for granted. Because what would we do with ourselves if it left and never came back?