When You Start to Sound Like Charlie Brown’s Teacher
As a parent, I often tire of the sound of my own voice. My daughter would pipe up with “me, too!”, but her voice is muffled under the duct tape. Parents spend literally hours saying “Don’t eat that! Pick up your dirty dishes! Do your homework! What are you wearing? What is that blue stuff on the side of your face?” I fall silent when, in my head, I hear Charlie Brown’s teacher.
The same thing happens with writing and blogging. I’ve reached a point where, when I review a post I’ve written, I think “shut up, already!” I asked a friend if she had any ideas on how to renew and strengthen my writer’s voice. She said I should write from someone elses’ perspective. I think that’s a great idea for writing fiction, but would have a tough time applying it to a personal blog.
One of the real joys of writing is when I’ve created something that I really like. It’s always delightful when others like it, too, but the crux of the issue is that I must like it first. I’ve had a few weeks where I posted just to retain a presence, when I wasn’t proud of the work, when I knew it wasn’t my best. In fact, some of my posts strike me as downright whiny. I’ve lost my sense of perspective.
One’s writing is often a reflection of what is happening in the offline life and I have to cut myself a little slack in the month of February. In Minnesota, after a good 4 months of winter, February seems to be a tipping point for myself and many of my friends. Spring is a mere two months away. Like knowing a job is ending, everything becomes more irritating, feeding into an attitude of discontent and frustration.
I’m struggling with putting the joy back in writing and blogging. Something indefinable is missing for me and I’ve pondered taking a long break from things to see if it would make a difference. I’m not sure it would and I wonder that something would be lost in not working through this time.
Writing is lovely when it flows and you experience that joy of creation, but there is something to be said for fighting banality and habit in order to, in the words of Jim Morrison, “Break on through (to the other side)”. I don’t know what’s on the other side. I am hoping it is not more of the “mwah, mwah, mwah” I’ve been hearing when I write, but I won’t know until I try.