During the past couple of days I have hit a bit of a groove on this blog (my follows are up quite a bit) and I really have been able to write consistently about varied topics. Today, though, it was kind of hard to generate content (I did do a daily prompt). I searched the internet for a little bit but couldn’t really strike the fire on any particular topic.
That set me off on a train of thought. I’m doing all this studying so one day I can get a job writing but what if I can’t write consistently? What if I get a gig and the stories just don’t hold up?
When I was doing journalism on a more consistent basis I had no trouble figuring out content to fill pages (it was kind of what I did well). With that behind me (for the time being) and the majority of my time being spent in the realms of fiction, poetry and other creative forms, I had this stark realization of “What if I can’t produce enough content?”
Can I get by without having every day high-quality production? Can I write pages for three days and twiddle my fingers for two? I think that is just the way it is, I’m probably just having a crisis of confidence at 3:00 am on a Friday. But I think it is something that all writers think about.
I do my best, on the “off” days, to toil away at it. And I think I know enough about writing to know that is something that you are supposed to do. I guess the contrast is I also get that I have to pull myself away from the keys and go for a walk, play a game or pretty much do anything that pulls me away from the blinking cursor. I guess it is hard to do that sometimes.
For my playwriting class, which I started working on earlier (and I thankfully have an idea for), we read an article about the purpose of the theater going experience and part of it centered around is there an obligation to reward the theater goer for the time spent listening to your story. Something I really responded to in it is how the author reworked his script. He had to change his environment and experience new things so he could look at the piece with a new perspective.
I really related to that because I found myself doing that a lot this week (even when I was in a writing “grove”). I’d clean different parts of my room and move things around, I’d try things out on Netflix and read things in books I haven’t opened for a while. All of those are things I have just done naturally before and tonight I’m starting to look at them as process.
The funny thing about it is that it led me to write this. I spent a lot of the night staring at discussion posts for school and switching over to Facebook/WordPress as updates clanged. It wasn’t until I played a session of NBA 2k14 that I really realized what I was doing. I needed a break from the screen. I needed to reboot.
I totally get that I am not supposed to have everything about this figured out. The subject is just something that has been at the back of my head and I wanted to get it out in text: process versus production. Which one matters more? I guess it depends on who you ask.