Thursday Three #39

  1. This is a good article on the importance of writing things by hand rather than writing using a computer. It boils down to this: writing by computer distances a writer from his work, leaving him to feel as though he has little authority over it.
  2. It is hard to bridge the distance between myself and writing, and I don’t think it has anything to do with handwriting versus typing. I no longer feel as though I have time to form a coherent thought, but that’s silly because I need to make time. Priorities have gotten in the way, I suppose.
  3. On the brighter side, I have gotten more of a chance to read. (It is easier to immerse oneself in another person’s created world than to build one’s own.) I am reading Mischling by first-time author Affinity Konar. It’s about twin sisters who wind up as victims of Josef Mengele’s deranged “scientific experiments” during the Holocaust. The writing style is gorgeous; all of the metaphors are spot on. Highly recommended, even if you’re sick to death of stories about World War II.

With Utmost Resolve

I didn’t make any concrete resolutions for 2018. When people ask what my resolution is, I tell them that it’s to be a good wife. I don’t know how you’d turn that into a SMART goal (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time bound), and by most accounts, resolutions and goals should be SMART. But I figure that if that is my only goal, then it should be OK. It is something I keep at the forefront of my mind all the time, and I don’t need any reminders to carry it out. I realized that if I make too many specific goals, I forget them or put too much effort into trying to remember exactly what they are.

The past couple years, I’ve been feeling guilty that I haven’t completed my resolutions to the extent that I would like to have done, so this year I want to let go of that guilt about arbitrary goals that don’t really matter all that much. I figure that if I focus my attention on the one goal that does matter, I’ll do better. After all, nobody’s perfect. Not even the company that made my planner:

A Year of Perspective Shifts

Almost everyone said that 2017 was terrible, what with all the shootings by those in pain, sexual transgressions by big shots in Hollywood, and hare-brained decisions by those in power.

To me, 2017 wasn’t terrible at all, unless you mean “terrible” in the old-fashioned, biblical sense of “formidable or something to be awed.” I found 2017 to be a year of perspective shifts. I’ve been away from this blog more often than I would have liked this year, and I’ve written barely any fiction at all—maybe a couple paragraphs here and there that I don’t think even added up to 5,000 words. The most writing I did was in my paper journal.

The strange part about all that is I don’t really feel much of a need to write fiction. I miss my characters, but I don’t really relate to them anymore because of this perspective shift. For the first time in my life, I feel like a true “adult,” and other adults are acknowledging me as one of them. I can relate to adults now, and I sympathize more with the adult characters in movies and books than I do with the teenagers. Yet I still don’t feel like I have the life experience needed to write great fiction or to portray adulthood accurately. I’ve been feeling as though writing fiction is somewhat pointless because all the great stories have already been told, and they have been told in much better ways than I could tell them.

I hope this is just a big stumbling block that materialized because of the perspective shift and that it will go away soon, but for now, I’m grateful to still be writing in some capacity, even if it’s not fiction.