Xenophobic Octopus

Oh hey.

You’re still here.

It’s been a while since I posted because…because…

I don’t really have a good reason. Maybe that’s part of the problem. It’s hard to come back after six months (or however long it’s been) and have no good explanation for the disappearance.

I just kind of…stopped caring.

Not about everything. My video gaming has remained steady, and I’m binge-watching four different shows right now. But writing got hard.

I finished the first draft of a novel in January, and promptly decided that I’m a terrible writer.

I mean, I actually still like most of it…but the opening chapters (which I attempted to start rewriting a while back) are…rough. Which is only to be expected of something I wrote four years ago, but I thought it was good at the time. Just like I think the stuff I wrote a few months ago is good…so I’m probably going to hate that in another couple years.

So now it’s hard to write. The only reason I’m writing this is I’m fairly certain nobody will see it and it will disappear into the interwebs as soon as its released.

I learned how to be good at lots of things as I grew up, but I never learned to be good at screwing up. And that’s a problem…because I seem to be doing a lot of that lately.

This video–a quote from Ira Glass about storytelling–has been resonating with me.

I can’t promise that I’ll be posting more often. I’ve made promises like that before, and broken them every time. All I can say is that I want to post more. I want to write again.

It’s just hard right now. So are titles. So…yeah, no payoff for whatever I named this. Sorry. This is me getting used to screwing up.

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4 Responses to Xenophobic Octopus

  1. Michael Lehmann says:

    More free advice from the internet (worth what you’ve paid for it):
    * Don’t focus on judging your results; focus on producing. Software developers have QA, writers have editors, and all of us have the whole world to judge what we do 😉
    * Spend all of your time either training/practicing or recovering from it. Don’t over-indulge in recovering, but don’t neglect it. You need time to metabolize what you’ve done.

  2. Suechan says:

    I am also constantly embarrassed about my past-me, and I’m trying to take better care of future-me, but I am familiar with that funk and that rut of feeling like you suck at the thing you do, and the apathy that can come with it. I’m sorry that you don’t feel the drive right now, and I hope it does eventually come back – maybe it will in a different form, or different capacity. You are a creative, entertaining writer as far as I’m concerned.
    Like Pia, I don’t remember how I started following your posts, but it’s been a few years, and seeing a new post brightens my day.
    Just keep following what inspires you. If nothing inspires you, keep up the self care and plod along until you do find inspiration. Muses are so fickle and I hate that they play hide and seek. The good thing is, this isn’t permanent.

  3. Pia Arras-Pretzler says:

    Hi Nathan,

    am I doing this right? I mean, is this the way to answer a post? I guess not, but hey, another piece of uselsess writing disappearing into the interwebs …

    I have been following you a couple of years now, I don’t even know why or when I started it. You are much younger than I am, I guess (I am a mother four, my eldest is 20, and I did not get him at 15!), and still there was always something in your posts that I could understand, use, think about. I liked them. I liked this last one especially. It’s real.

    The mother I am makes me tell you: Screwing up is okay. It actually is the only way to learn and grow. Don’t give up … I won’t promise that some day it will all work out – maybe it won’t -, that’s not the point anyway. The point is being a good person. Especially (but of course not only) towards yourself.

    Take care!

    Pia

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