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The Members' Blog

The Curse of Silence

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Article by robert mclysaght © 10 October 2017 .
Posted in the Members' Blog ( ).

Normally I can’t shut my brain up, it constantly chatters,spitting out ideas at the most inconvenient times, many times I find myself searching for a pen, pencil, crayon anything that writes, once I used my wife’s mascara pen and a receipt to jot down a ‘killer’ idea.

Those moments although inconvenient and sometimes frustrating are nothing compared to being as the cohen brothers put it ‘barton finked’.

Staring at the infinite desolation of a picture of a white cat in a snowstorm or as my art teacher put it A BLANK PAGE (everybody’s a critic)

Today was just such a day the childer were out with mum and I finished work early, so home-light the fire, tea on, wonderful solitude– peace and quiet, I sat in front of my computer and… not a word, after six months of working on my manuscript every day with phones ringing, dogs barking, innumerable questions about homework, I took the opportunity to write in peace, nothing, so I resorted to the old free writing trick to start the juices flowing, picked a title and… nothing, so then I decided to read what I had written up to this fateful day to try and ignite the idea fire once again.

I felt guilty about not writing anything today especially when I had a wonderful window of quiet time,Guess I’m a writer who needs the cacophony of life all around him to be able to write.
When I stared out writing I imagined that I would be an introspective writer like Ian Rankin, holed up in a fortress of solitude with all my ideas splayed out on crumpled pages in a chaotic almost random pattern that only I held the key to, hah! If only, I write at the kitchen table or sometimes I sit on the couch and write there, usually with the telly on and everyone racing around me.

“If only I could get some peace and quiet, I could write my socks off”. Famous last words.

So I did what any sensible writer (oxymoron alert) would do I gave up, put away my computer and my notebook and sat down in a melancholic slump of defeat the page had beaten me today…or had it, in that moment I came up with the idea for this blog so although I didn’t write anything to do with my manuscript I managed to write about not writing it, take that blank page.

Chaos restored and as the random banter of family life fills the house once again a certain calm flows over me, feeling quite smug and self assured that my block had dissipated I returned to my work again.
Eugh! still nothing I guess I’ll have to put today down as a revision day and hope that tomorrow brings some new inspiration.

Take heart fellow writers the block will pass and a fresh surge of literary inspiration shall flow(well, at least I hope so)


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