At least I feel a bit foolish committing to a month of daily blog posts with only Sundays off. When it comes to describing my writing practice, A words like avoidance and ambivalence spring to mind. A few years ago when I cut back on my work life to devote more time to writing, and people asked how it was going, I had to confess, “Well, it turns out I’ve freed up more time to avoid writing.”
Not only am I undisciplined, I have also made a sad discovery: The Spirit—the one I rely on to speak through me as if I am just taking dictation rather than toiling away —also suffers from writer’s block.
But rather than throw in the towel, I have thrown myself into the A to Z Blogging Challenge. I’d heard about it a couple of years ago from my writing friend Claire, who participated. Then last year, the Write On Mamas, to which I belong, participated in the Challenge in a kind of round-robin way, with the members each contributing a letter. (Mine was E is for Empty Nest, which I reveal here with some trepidation in case I want to recycle it for this year’s Challenge. On the other hand, recycling is a conscientious choice for a planet threatened with environmental degradation, so if you see it here again in a few days, it is not because I am ambivalent and avoidant—aka lazy—but because it is the ethical thing to do.)
As part of our writing group’s effort, I also wrote a post on my own blog called A-Z: A Writer’s Alphabet. I was not yet ready to take the plunge, but I could at least come up with a line pertaining to writing for every letter of the alphabet. I had gotten into the habit of writing one line, a far less daunting task, with my friend Mary’s encouragement.
Then the aforementioned Claire said, “You really ought to do the A to Z Challenge! It’ll be good for you.” (Actually, she said “A to Zed,” because she’s British, which makes everything she says sound persuasive.) So now I am trying to think of writing as just a bunch of lines, strung together. One line upon another building into a paragraph, a post, an essay, an article, even a book. Or at least a month of daily blogging.
As you can see, my blog is called Shrinkrapped. It’s not about therapy, but I am a therapist, so psychology suffuses my world view. I’m particularly interested in how the personal, the political, and the psychological come together.
Some of my current favorite obsessions include: Motherhood; The Empty Nest (and, since my daughter has recently moved back, the not-so-empty nest); Politics; Psychology; Friendships; and Ruptures in Women’s Friendships. Plus, since everything is copy, one unwelcome obsession: What I’m calling my Cancer Detour, a new muse that showed up in my life in September 2012 (I’m fine now).
I hope you enjoy Shrinkrapped. Let the Challenge begin, and please chime in!