Today

Today, I don’t want to write. I don’t want to look at anything on the internet. If I could spend all my free time reading or walking through woods and fields, or over hills, that would suit me fine. I was out walking this morning when all this began running through my head. I felt completely fed up with the novels I’m working on, fed up with all my writing. I felt I’d like to delete all of them and tear up my notebooks. I felt I’d like to delete my published books.

Today, I hate all the characters I’ve created.

Am I the only one who does this? It was clearly my mood, but I felt a strong temptation to delete both my Facebook and Twitter accounts when I returned home, and even my blog. I won’t, of course, but I can’t rid myself of the feeling I would feel a lot freer if I did. And what if I had the courage to delete all of my online self? My email address? I had just a glimpse of the freedom I’d have if I never had to go onto the internet again, and it looked good.

51 thoughts on “Today

  1. I never feel like this, Mick. I love my blog and I love interacting and chatting to other bloggers. Lots of you have become friends and we connect often. I am not a huge twitter fan but I like FB, I enjoy seeing peoples photographs and learning what is going on in their lives.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Glad you don’t, Robbie. I’m usually like that, but I have times when I just need to shut myself away from the world. Yes, many other bloggers are now friends, but I sometimes need to tell friends ‘Sorry, I’m just not in a good place at the moment. Speak to you later.’

      Like

  2. Bear

    Nothing stopping you taking a step back and signing out of everything for a good week or two. A breather.
    As you know, some idiots do take the nuclear option a bit quick but soon end up back again anyway after what should have just been a break… 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I have sometimes felt like this. In November 1973 in a mood of bleak depression (soon after I got married!) I threw away all my teenage diaries/creative notebooks. I didn’t regret doing that immediately… but have at intervals since. Later, whenever I got fed up with my whole self and longer for a new ‘page’s I would move house. Even bigger, and financially ruinous, mistake. Give yourself some away time, months if need be, before deleting anything. Remember what we have all just been through. Hang on in there.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for all that. I’ve also rather re-invented my life a couple of times over the years and although I have got rid of stuff I should probably regret having got rid of, I think it was probably a price worth paying for managing to draw a line under that period of my life. In my case it was largely photographs, although I do wonder if some of the notebooks I also got rid of might have been worth saving.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. On occasion I have that same mood, but it never lasts more than a day. I usually give in to my whim to step back for a day, spend time cleaning house, reading, dozing … and the next day I’m back in the saddle. Sometimes too much information overwhelms, I think … it’s constant and just once in a while we need peace and quiet.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Mick, I understand your frustration. It is normal for artists to want to deface their own creations. It is the same energy that compels you to create. There is so much to be frustrated about, but think of all the lovely people you will inspire with your work, and with your presence. Keep up the good fight.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Sabiscuit. Very kind words. Yes, I think it’s normal. In the past I have occasionally destroyed paintings when in that mood, and I think that has been a good thing overall – the mood has given me the courage to do some culling that needed to be done, which otherwise I wouldn’t have done.

      Not sure about inspiring others, though. Perhaps more of a warning!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. John Bainbridge

    This isn’t uncommon, Mick. I’ve felt a terrible indolence these past few months and written very little of my book. It’s annoying, frustrating but I’d regret losing them.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know I would too, John. I do have to do some culling occasionally, though, and it usually requires this sort of mood to give me the courage to do so. At times I can be very slow to see something needs to go, and by carrying out a cull I give myself space to start afresh on something.

      Perhaps I should view it like a bush fire enabling new growth?

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Ahh .., Mick, that walk sounded so peaceful and free. That made you long for total
    freedom from any bonds. I am sure you soon will love your book characters again.

    Take a break and they will call you. I am not member of either Facebook or Twitter
    but find FB a place were I met so many that I care for and feel like real life friends.
    I do think you should enjoy more walks and take a break. We are all overwhelmed
    By media and tragedies.

    Miriam

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Miriam. I do walk as often as possible, it’s a source of creativity for me as well as a way to rest and refresh.

      And the mood is not entirely destructive; after a couple of days or so it makes me look critically at my work and it becomes a little easier to decide what can stay and what needs to go.

      Like

      1. To play on the analogy a bit more, marathoners “hit the wall” at about 18 miles. This is the sudden lack of energy resulting from pushing one’s limits – but this is different from The Bonk which is both physical and psychological and most often the consequence of putting in too many “junk miles”. The later is wasted effort that depletes rather than builds strength and confidence. Writers also hit The Wall and The Bonk, so do teachers, factory workers and system analysts. We use the term burn-out, which is related, but it all comes down to quality and quantity of work.

        A walk in the woods is the best cure. Maybe even a summer of it.

        Best regards.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. It feels as though there is a lot of truth in that. ‘Junk miles’ seems like a good comparison – there seems to be a point (certainly in my case, although I can’t answer for anyone else) where one sometimes becomes aware they’ve been writing rubbish for the last however long. Then it’s definitely time to stop and retreat and get out into those woods.

          Liked by 1 person

  8. I sometimes feel the siren call of disconnecting, too, Mick. Especially social media, which can be such a time and energy suck. I’m trying to hold to boundaries—limiting how often I check email or social media. And I don’t have Facebook or Twitter on my phone, so they won’t tempt my attention away when I’m interacting with the world. Something potent is probably stirring in that discontent you are feeling. Take care.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Donna. Hopefully it’s potent in a creative way – it usually is, eventually. I just have to be careful not to leap in and do anything too drastic for a day or two. When I return it’s usually refreshed and with a critical but sensible eye.

      As for the social media, I find Twitter works for me as I’m very strict how I use it, but I only remain on Facebook to keep in touch with a few people who I might find it too difficult to do so otherwise. I freely admit I hate it.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Understandable Mick. Everything has it’s moments of good and bad, I guess life is all about balancing those and the way we feel about them. I have weeks where I really can’t be a**** to do anything online and certainly lose interest in emailing and keeping in touch regularly. Just need to know how to manage those spells. Long walks, sporadic violence, heavy drinking, and extreme unhealthy snacks will generally help.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Ann. Yes, it’s probably something all ‘creatives’ go through. I’ve regularly destroyed numbers of my paintings, too. Generally, they’ve been ones that weren’t up to scratch anyway, and I just lacked the courage to do it until then.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Perfectly natural feeling. When I feel that way and can’t get off for a walk, I read through some of my older posts and generally run into one or two that show improvement and that gives me reason to give my online presence another day.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. What a coincidence Mick. This is what I wrote in my diary today, that I wanted to stay away from social media for a while. Then I decided to restrict myself to Insta and WordPress and decided to stay away from Fb. But the truth is in the current scenario, thanks to Social media, we are still connected with like minded people. Can’t imagine losing that too. I hope the feeling passes soon for you. Take care.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Smitha. Yes, I read it earlier and felt I couldn’t really add anything to what you wrote. I’m hanging in there, as I always do when I have a bit of the ‘black dog’. I’d drop Facebook like a shot if it wasn’t for the fact I use it to keep up with two or three people I don’t have other contact with.

      But feeling back to normal-ish now. And treated social media with caution!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. I totally get it. I’m telling myself not to think too much and focus on the positives. Thank you for sharing how you felt. It helps to know that I’m not the only one feeling this. This too shall pass.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Though I don’t feel like that it is a good thing you are still connected to the real world. Being in isolation the internet is great, but when I have managed to get out for a walk or I’m in the garden I am glad to be back in reality.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. You will vanquish them for sure… 🙃 u are already free, mick… the internet isn’t a shackle…u can just log off and forget about it…for as many days as u please… then connect with whoever u remember more… or interact less but keep posting yr poems and prose and paintings… they become more alive when people engage with them, right? 🙂 tke cre, mick. This too shall pass.

        Liked by 1 person

  14. I definitely have moments like that with my artwork. I never experienced it with writing though. I tend to think of writing as fluid — always subject to change. If I don’t like something I’ve written, I can revise it. If an editor disliked something, oh, well, I revised it. For me that was part of what being a writer was all about. It’s a lot different for me with art. I don’t have any natural ability there, so when it feels like a struggle — which happens from time to time — I really am tempted to give up. But then I think of this: “When you first started, you were desperate to be where you are now, and if you give up now, you’ll be right back where you started.” So, no matter how frustrated I become, no matter how disillusioned I get with trying to make art, I hang in there and keep going. And, yes, long walks in the woods are always good. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I do a lot of revision, it’s what writing demands, after all. These moments are a little different, though. These are more a mixture of Imposter Syndrome and depression, when I begin to think that even a hundred thousand word novel has no redeeming features at all.

      Fortunately, the knowledge of how long I’ve spent working on it tends to prevent me from doing anything too drastic to it. Plus I always have saved copies just in case something happens.

      It’s much easier to rip up a painting, though…

      Liked by 1 person

  15. I can’t say I’ve ever felt like deleting everything. I figure all those little creations are kind of link wrinkles, they may not always seem beautiful, but I earned them. But for those days like “today”, if you’re tired of writing, don’t. It’s time to recharge the battery.

    Liked by 1 person

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