I had such high hopes when I started this site. I was going to post twice a week while keeping up with my other site as well as Facebook, Pinterest and Tumblr. I can admit now that I may have been a little bit of an over achiever with my expectations. After all, this is my first blog and I’d like to say at my age that’s a lot, except that I’m Madonna’s age and she’s killing it. And frankly making us grandma’s look bad out here.
No it isn’t anything noble like NaNoWriMo. I can’t even blame it on “writer’s block”. But it is an addiction and I have been bingeing. And my dealer has been Netflix.
As soon as I heard that The X-files was returning in January I thought it would be a great idea to catch up on the old seasons just for fun. It started out that way and quickly turned in to an obsession that I couldn’t control. I actually have tried to limit myself to a certain number of shows each night but who was I kidding. I’m the woman that can eat an entire carton of ice cream in one night by “pacing myself”. Tell that to my hips. Why I thought I’d be any better with this was just delusional. There have been nights I have been up until 4am watching while my patient husband put on my leopard print eye mask just to get some shut eye so he could get up at 9am for his business.
As I’m nearing the end I have to say it’s been great watching it again. Listening to the poetic prose of Mulder and Scully as they talk so eloquently about how funny life can be when you’re chasing an alien conspiracy or fighting off shape-shifting monsters really did inspire me. I didn’t pay much attention to it when I watched it nearly 22 years ago. Of course back then I merely loved to read books but never dreamed of ever writing them. Now I appreciate a great turn of phrase even if it’s in a commercial. I mean good writing is not easy, and should always be appreciated.
So as my season 9 runs down and after my period of mourning is over, which I go through whenever I say good-bye to characters I love, I know it will only be for a few weeks. I will be reunited once again with the greatest FBI partners of all time, at least for one season.
Then it’s time to ask myself some hard questions. If I can put all that time into watching 9 seasons of television everynight for weeks, why can’t I make myself write every night? Afterall, I dedicated over 200 hours of television time to just the X-files over the last month, not including all my other favorite show thrown in. That’s a lot of time when you think about it. I won’t say it’s lost time because everything you see, hear and feel goes into your writing. But if you’re looking at time spent alone, that would have been some major writing time. So why am I not doing it?
Maybe the answer was staring me right in the face the whole time. Perhaps, like Scully, I overthink things too much. Should I say it this way or is there a better word or phrase for that? Do I have enough detail without giving too much away? Am I following the rules of grammar close enough or is that even possible? How do I find my own voice without sounding like an amateur? Do I use the 3 act method? Am I rising tension without giving too much away too early? And on, and on, and on…..
Am I too, like Scully, letting fear keep me from just letting go and writing what I want, how I want, just to get it on paper. Am I so worried about the rules that it’s stifling any creativity I might have until I don’t want to even start. Am I so afraid of having others laugh at me or criticize my work that it’s just easier to not put myself out there at all?
I want to be like Mulder. I want to be that confident and self-assured in my ideas. He doesn’t care who laughs at him or thinks he’s crazy. He has no problem throwing out his ideas for all to ridicule and keeps on smiling. He believes in what he is doing and no one is going to stop him, no matter the cost. Granted, he suffers for those beliefs sometimes, but at least he sticks to them. Never compromising his mission. Because, say it with me, The Truth Is Out There.
So it’s time to get back at it. Setting daily writing times, or word counts, or whatever gets me back to writing. My slump is officially over. No more “writer’s block”. No more excuses. Either as an early Christmas present to myself, or an early-early New Year’s resolution: it’s time to get these stories written. And who knows. Maybe Netflix will want to make one of my stories into one of their Exclusive Productions. I’m mean, lets face it, they kinda owe me.