Yes, life can knock the words out of you.
“Point of all being – I stopped writing. What I had written when I returned to the page to rewrite I didn’t like. I didn’t feel like I was at that place anymore because I wasn’t. My life, my experience, my hopes, my dreams had changed. It took me awhile to stop lamenting and look forward.”
– River Jordan in Life Knocked the Words out of Me
I was happy to see author River Jordan’s post. While it was hard reading that life’s troubles had taken away her words for a time, it was wonderful seeing that she had fought back and had new words flowing across the page.
She shared something a lot of authors won’t talk about: the fact that bad things can stop a writer from writing.
If the author of The Miracle of Mercy Land and The Gin Girl could be stopped in her tracks, than any of us could. A recent article in a writer’s magazine said we should write through our troubles. Perhaps there are times when we can. Gurus say that writing is a business and that we should write every day just as those who work 9-5 jobs go to work every day even when they’re feeling blue.
Writing every day is a crock of an idea for a writer to follow when s/he is down and out and finds the words have been knocked out of him or her.
Today is the 31st anniversary of the Challenger disaster. I saw it happen on TV. I hope the other writers who saw if in person or on television didn’t slog back to their dens and continue writing as usual. I felt the same way on 9/11. I was already at work when the horror began. None of us got a lot of work done that day.
Personal slings and arrows impact us, too. Deaths in the family. Sick spouses and friends. Lost pets. The best writers are, I think, very intuitive, often empathic, and so it is that their strengths become stumbling blocks in stormy times because the vibes/impressions/intuition are simply off or off the scale.
When writers share the fact that there are days when they cannot write and that there are days when they finally dredge up wht wherewithal to begin writing again, the rest of us feel stronger for knowing it.
Malcolm R. Campbell is the author of The Sun Singer which is free on Kindle January 28 and 29.