There is so much going on in the world now that I feel I should write a post. About SOPA, about Romney (or the other Republican “candidates“), or even about a certain TV Show that I’d like to see saved. All are topics I’ve been mentally writing posts about for awhile.
But, I’m having a hard time working up enough motivation to write on such topics, certainly not in any way that would interest a readership.
There have even been some personal turns in the past couple weeks that deserve some virtual ink, too, and eventually I’ll write about them, but at the moment I can’t summon the words.
When the end of the year was approaching, I was considering writing a rumination on the year that had been, a noteworthy year to be sure. After the article in the WaPo, I found myself having a brief run of interviews and publicity (even a one-time-only ‘recognized on the streets’ moment). It was a true ’15 minutes’ in the most Warholian of meanings.
But, then I didn’t write it. It happened, it past, my life goes on. 2011 didn’t end on the highest of notes, so it all really seems irrelevant.
I guess what I’m saying is that I have plenty to write about, but nothing I want to write.
This is a problem for a writer, obviously.
This is not to say that I cannot write. I’m making a little extra money returning to my essay writing gig, and the work I’m doing for that is still platinum quality (I’m always the consummate BS-er).
But the creative stuff, the speculative and contemplative writing, or the imaginative and poetic writing, it just isn’t free flowing.
This is the problem of running a blog. All those ‘blog experts’ (newly anointed last week, apparently) say that you should write every day to maintain your audience. I should always have something new on the front page, they say, and while I’m at it, make an effort of reading and commenting on other people’s blogs, too. This is how you build up a following, this is how you grow a blog.
Here’s the thing: Fuck that. I mean, yeah, okay, I get it. Be part of a community of writers, support and encourage fellow bloggers and they’ll return the favor.
But, let’s be honest. 90% of the bloggers who leave a comment on my page are only doing so in order to get a return visit, from me and from any of my regular readers (jokes on them, I don’t have any). Blogging isn’t a communal activity. It’s solipsism on display. The mark of a successful blogger is the ability to convince a bunch of other bloggers that they should have a conversation on a topic, but, you know, on my page.
I don’t believe blogging is a good medium for a novelist. Even as I type those words, I’m sure someone else has a blog post titled, ‘Why Every Novelist Should Have A Blog.’ And, of course, it’s pretty hypocritical for me to make that statement while writing on my blog.
Well, my blog is a publicity stunt. It exists to gradually (like, glacially) build up anticipation for an eventual book. It exists entirely separate from what I consider my true ambitions as a novelist.
It may be a stereotype, and a not entirely true one, but I believe in the solitary writer, the secluded drunk who forsakes his friends and the sauce for an extended period to unleash his muse and free his words. I’m currently buried in a mountain of books about Fitzgerald, O’Neill, Hemingway, etc., and two reoccurring themes have become apparent: These authors did their best work when they distanced themselves from people, and these alcoholics did their most productive work when they practiced temperance.
That latter theme might not be a bridge I’m ready to cross, but I can appreciate the importance of the former habit.
As part of my 10 Cities Project, I feel the need to be sociable and involved with friends. But, as a depressive, I really appreciate bouts of solitude. Plus, this week, I’m luckily losing my job, so, hey, no money and no need to leave my apartment. Bonus!
This is all to say (in a completely oblique and willfully unfocused post), that I have nothing of importance to say right now, and if that means I am an unsuccessful blogger and am going to lose my audience (hah), so be it.
As a man with four completed (albeit, unpublished) novels and a godless amount of poems under my belt, I spit in the face of those writers who say I need to have a schedule and write every day.
Fuck you. The only thing I need is a drink.