Notable Absence

on 22 March 2010

Over the course of 2 days I've gotten 2 different emails inquiring as to my absence in the blog-o-sphere.


How to explain?


Writer's block?  The white, blank, staring of that terrible box.  Yes.  But also not quite.

I've written out post after post over the past few weeks.  Relating stories that I found funny, putting thoughts and jumbled up feelings into cohesive sentences.  And then it's the frantic DELETE DELETE DELETE.  It's more like Writer's Second Guessing.  Writer's Commitment-phobia.  Publication Paranoia.  With a steaming side of self-doubt.

I find myself thinking obsessively about you, my audience, my friends, family and former co-workers.  And there are those of you whom I've never met but still consider to be my friends.  After all, we talk.  Well.  I talk.  I worry about reception and comprehension.  I am frustrated at my inablity to communicate effectively and that frustration makes me mean.

Just ask Chris.  He's been on the business end of my mean-streak for the past 3 or 4 weeks.  Poor guy.

(Just for the sake of honesty, I'm currently, furiously, fighting the urge to DELETE DELETE DELETE right NOW.)


I don't know what to say and so I find myself saying the same poor, tired words.  All used up from so many previous posts, so many already told stories.  And I hate myself for the repetition.

Coupled with the, sometimes irresistible urge to DELETE DELETE DELETE, comes the urge to DELETE the whole blog.  End it.  Destroy it.  Find some sort of solace in burning it all to the ground.  But the quiet part of my mind understands that the blog, ultimately, doesn't belong to me.  It belongs to you, dear reader.  It belongs to Chris and the Boy.  I'm just the unnamed narrator.  My job is to captivate, to illustrate, to illuminate--not to govern.

And so I remove myself from temptation.  I step away from the blog with my hands in the air.  I turn off the computer and pace. 

And to fill up the time, I read a lot.  I'm currently working on Adam Bede by George Eliot and a book called Inside the Victorian Home--which, in spite of it's title is a fascinating look at where we were 100+ years ago, which isn't so far away from where we are now.  We like to think that we're so evolved, so very different from our history and yet...we really aren't.  I read a collection of essays called the Mother in Me and it was wonderful.  I read the introduction to War and Peace by Pevear and Volokhonsky and then went back and reread all of the introductions to all of their translations to gain a more thorough understanding of what it is they're trying to do for Russian literature.  I reread some Isaac Babel, and sections from some of my previously read and much loved favorites.

I listen to a lot of music.  I just picked up the soundtrack from (500) days of Summer.  The movie was only ok but the soundtrack was AMAZING.  I went out two days later and bought it.  It makes me and the Boy rather happy to have it on.  I keep listening to this song obsessively (no, it's not on the soundtrack, it's from another playlist I have going most of the time).  I find it suits my current mood just perfectly.

And I do stuff.  I hang out with friends, I take the Boy and we go walk around.  I find it hard to sit still.  Sitting still I remember how very tired I am.  I'm not sleeping well.  I don't really know why.  Well, right now it's because Chris isn't here.  He's in Chicago this week.  Once the Boy is in bed for the night the apartment is despairingly quiet.  But this is all beside the point.

Don't worry about me.  I'll be ok.  It's just a funk.  It's partly spring and allergies and long, long days.  There's no exciting news, we're not pregnant, we don't have a job yet, we're not moving or vacationing any time soon.  I would tell you.  I like communal happiness and private anxiety.  And that's really all it is.  It's not unhappiness, it's not foul or sad or grumpy.  It's anxiety and nervousness and jittery fidgets.


And now we have reached the end of this post, at which point I would normally proof and edit and then pace a bit and then come back and DELETE DELETE DELETE, but instead I'm just going to click PUBLISH and then step away. 

So tell me.  How are you guys doing?

4 comments:

Katrina said...

I think its just good to hear how you are doing. It doesn't have to be literary genius every day. :-) Miss you.

Sibley Saga .... said...

Yup. What she said.

Sibley Saga .... said...

Yup. What she said.

Erin P said...

I've felt that way. But what's the purpose of this, anyway? For me, it's to express, to write, to put my thoughts out there. I edit, rewrite and reconsider too. And...what Katrina said. I'm glad you checked in. If it makes you stressed, don't do it though.