Writing What I Felt
I needed to write, but I was experiencing blah. Was that an emotion? It was my form of exhaustion in every way, shape, and form. I am not proud of it, but I have found a lot of my days lately have overflowed with stress. I sat in the morning pondering if I was going to write anything because I have been in a funk. I didn’t feel like writing at all, and I was not sure about the extensive project I promised myself I would finish.
So, what did I do when I didn’t feel like writing? What every good writer does surf the net. I realized email was an excellent place to start my procrastination. I was sent an email for Camp NaNoWriMo, and it was very inspiring for my moment in time. Write what you feel email by Kat Yeh said: “Some people say write what you know—I say write what you feel.”
Through my academic circles, I had studied plenty about writing what I knew, however writing what I felt has been felt out. I had not heard someone approach writing what you feel this way before. When I have been looking up ideas about character emotions, I have come across a lot of writers and artist taking a sharp memory and writing from the feelings you had at that moment — this type of writing I can do with ease. There are days, weeks, and sometimes months when I have struggled with writing. When the thought of a book came up, it felt more like a chore than something I wanted to do. The writing honeymoon was over, and it only took three years.
I am not ready to divorce writing or my muse. However, I needed to know how to work on my relationship when I didn’t feel like being in it. I heard from people give up writing and do something else with your life. What people have not witnessed was how great writing had been the one thing that had carried me through the darkness, and joy I felt in creation. I was at least staring at my screen, I got my butt in the chair, and I continued to watch the blinking curser. How in the world could I write what I feel when I didn’t even feel like writing?
In these moments of blah was when mind dumping and freewriting were my lifesavers (suddenly have a candy craving). The email I had read said to take a few minutes to just writing whatever it was you were feeling. Sometimes I need to vent, and there was no one else to listen. So, I vent to the computer screen. With the beautiful world of dictation, I can yell at my device, and it will record every word I say. However, just like humans, it has continuously got some of it wrong.
I decided to do a little therapeutic writing, getting all of these emotions and thoughts onto a page for about 5 minutes. This was when a lightbulb turned on for me. I have heard many times from many people, even in my academic writing circles to write what you know but what I knew at that moment was what I felt.
Then from the instruction of the email, I began to write a character in a funk about life and feeling in some way, it will never get better than this. This woman couldn’t see the future for all the things going on in her life right then. They couldn’t see the joy of the light or the relief of the rain. They stared off into the darkness, and it consumed this character like a moth to a flame. And just like that, the main character for my next book was born.
The moral of this story is to just write.