Monday, March 3, 2014

Tabula Rasa

Write a blog post.

Sounds simple, doesn't it?  I should be able to write one of those without too much thought.  Write a few paragraphs and hit 'publish', and then I can get to the other things on my 'to-do' list, like laundry.


Nope.  Nada.  I got zip.

The blank screen that greets me doesn't help, either.

It's not like paper. With a blank sheet of paper, there's that feeling of anticipation, that sense that anything is possible, as if what you might write can become anything at all, from a simple recipe to the great American novel.  The press of the pen to the paper, the flow of the ink as it forms the letters, all drive that creative need.

There's nothing encouraging about the whiteness of a computer screen.  The whiteness seems to glare at me, the blinking cursor taunting me with a blankness that invades my head, sucking all the creativity right out of me.  Even my cat Pounce, who likes to put her face in front of my monitor and follow my typing, is not impressed.

Should I write about the latest True Detective?  How about the cold weather that showed up today?  Should I write about The Fault in Our Stars, which I just finished?  How about my cat?  Cats should be good for a couple of paragraphs.  After all, they're always doing wacky things on the internet. My head is empty on this day, my mind a blank slate.  The river of my creativity has been dammed this day.

I start, then delete, then start again.  Then I get annoyed at myself for being wishy washy.  That is not normal for me.  I am pretty decisive in my writing. I generally just sit down and start typing, after an idea has percolated in my brain all day.  

I'm not used to just...nothing.  It's a bit anxiety-provoking.  What if this blankness is the new norm?  What if I never have an original thought ever again?  Does that mean I will be the next Sarah Palin?  I cannot see Russia from my house, but I imagine I could clean up enough for a political campaign.

I refuse to panic yet. 

Maybe I just need a good night's sleep.  Maybe tomorrow inspiration will strike and all will be well.  I need to think positive, right?


Does this happen to everyone else, or is it just me?  


  1. Nope, not just you! Most of the time I don't sit down until I have an idea, and paper? Well then you can always doodle, and doodles totally look productive!

  2. I've been like this for weeks lately! I just looked at the time stamp too. Why are you up so late? With me, I have ideas that float through my mind, I think about formulating them into something on paper, then poof. The dissipate into thin air (could be the age thing and I'm forgetting). I just don't feel clever and engaging right now and I'm not sure what I'm going to do about it either. Isn't True Detective intriguing? We are glued to it. My kids tell me House of Cards is fantastic too but I haven't started it yet.

  3. This is currently happening to me RIGHT NOW. I haven't written anything in nearly a week (a pretty long stretch for me) and I keep talking myself out of every topic I think of. It will come back. It has to, right? RIGHT?

  4. I have lots of things to blog about and yet when I sit down... nothing.

    You are in good company.

    And also the third person I've read in the last two days blogging about their inability to blog. :)

  5. It's not just you. Unfortunately, I had writers block for YEARS. Am trying to push myself to be inspired yet again, but lately it's been hard. I see a lot of posts like yours lately and it makes me wonder, especially as most are from female bloggers (is it just because there are a higher % of us) and most of us are in the midst of the cold, gray winter. I'm thinking of maybe getting a sunlamp. Hope you find your muse soon. And me too


I welcome comments, but reserve the right to correct your spelling because I am OCD about it!