Writing–It’s Our ‘Normal’

All of us have had those days when we’re just going through the motions and dragging our feet—lethargic. Dishes in the sink are piling up. You might be working two or three jobs just to keep afloat, and the drama at the office is wearing you out. Drama at the home isn’t much better. You’re pulled in a million different directions, and everyone wants your attention. You might be going through an emotional low point and can’t motivate yourself to do much, and writing is far down the to-do list. You might be sick—with a fever or something worse.

How am I supposed to write in this condition?” Because your conditions aren’t ‘normal’, you allow yourself to slack off with writing. However, we encounter a lot of difficulties in life:

  • Growing up
  • Relationship/heartbreaks
  • Going to college
  • Tests
  • FINALS
  • Performances and parades
  • Roommate drama
  • College graduation
  • Car accidents
  • Horse accident
  • Trips across the U.S.
  • Trips overseas
  • Living in a foreign land for several months
  • Living with a family of three small children
  • Having three or five children of your own plus numerous of pets and a spouse to care for
  • Fevers, colds, all sorts of illnesses
  • Work — long commute
  • House maintenance and remodeling
  • Family drama
  • Visitors—who stay a year
  • Heart surgery (or any kind of surgery)
  • Death in the family
  • Watching a loved one endure unspeakable back pain
  • Betrayal and backstabbing from those considered friends

And so on and so forth.

The point is even with all this we still write. Why? Because writing is what is ‘normal’ to us. The world can be crashing down around us. We can find ourselves sitting in the waiting room of a hospital not knowing what news we will hear next, but instead of pacing and over-thinking the unchangeable situation, we write. It brings an indescribable peace to us, and it pulls us out of ourselves and helps us see things from a different perspective. It calms us and passes the time more swiftly, so when the doctor comes in with news, we can look up expectantly but not overly anxious because you know being anxious doesn’t help the situation—having a clear mind does; at least that’s how it works in your stories, and you know your life is one big story. What kind of character do you want to be?

So, what if you’re down with a fever? The last thing you want to do is look at a computer screen—especially a blank page that won’t write itself. Not only that but your brain won’t stop thinking! You can’t complete a thought without another thought interrupting! How are you supposed to write anything that makes sense? The amazing thing is, once you focus, the thoughts seem to complete themselves, and they do make sense. As for not wanting to stare at the computer screen—well, a lot of people can type without looking at the screen—only opening their eyes when they think they’ve made a mistake and need to backspace.

A lot of people put off writing when life interrupts, but to me, writing is what is normal. When I can’t write or don’t write, something is seriously wrong—that is abnormal. Sure, I might not be able to reach my 1,000-2,000 words a day that I like, but if I can write at least 250-500 words, I’m satisfied because I tried.  Some days are harder than others. Sometimes you may suffer Writer’s Block in addition to everything happening in your life, but you need to determine where on the scale of importance does writing rank in your life.

So, is writing your normal?