Today, for like ten minutes, I had the first honest to goodness writer's block. It was terrifying, and it had nothing to do with my anthology (which has taken the back seat to my regular work, again). I was working on creating simple essay questions for my students. Normally, I can usually generate these in an instant, no problem. Not this time.
For those ten minutes, I felt like a struggling graduate student again with the self-doubt and the "I have lost my edge" fear. Shivers. I only got out of it because I told my husband, "Dude, I think I have an honest to goodness writer's block. I can't think of anything." The confession worked.
In the end, I came up with two questions, and I m looking forward to the essays. Ironically, the students have to write for an hour and twenty minutes, by hand, so they really cannot waste any of their time.
I don't have any pregnant writing advice. Mostly, I want to go into a sleep cocoon, but I have a nasty chest cold that is dragging me down. I have however, taken small steps, like downloading old comments by generous friends, comments I will incorporate, but realistically, I will have to wait until the break to work on this book and really polish it.
I have been writing for a couple of days now. Unfortunately, the writing has nothing to do with my book, and I think, it is making me nauseous.
I have a post-tenure review, which means I get to be evaluated (add your own synonym) every four years. The portfolio is due tomorrow, and like a bad student, I waited until this weekend to put it together. The problem is that I have little energy right now, and frankly, don't feel like rattling off about all the wonders of my teaching. (I am on page six of my teaching techniques and will not write more than another paragraph.)
In some ways, this reminds me of having to develop a large ego for writing, at least some writers do. That is not my cup of tea by any means, and some of the best writers I have met and admired were not full of themselves. In fact, arrogant writers, even very good ones, annoy me. Conceited people in general, get on my last nerve.
So, here's to some preferred writing humility.
My writing advice for the day is to take a nap and watch something mindless, maybe the strong adjectives and verbs will follow.