Listlessness  – The Enemy of Writing

The various voices in your head clamoring to be heard, ensure that your mind is never a quiet place. Wait, I’m not insane – don’t rush off to get me committed! I’m a writer.

Now that we’ve avoided me getting committed, let’s get back to writing. In spite of the wonder of those voices, writing is more often than not, a lonely job. At the end of it all, you’re the one who has to sit there and bring your stories to life with your words.

On good days, it’s the best thing in the world. On bad days… you wonder what possessed you to write. What insanity took you over to put your fingers over your keyboard and type away. Or lift a pen and write.

On those horrible days when listlessness plagues you like a thick, sticky sludge wrapping around you and dragging you down, it feels as if life has no purpose. As if you’re in a bubble where nothing interests you and nothing can touch your emotions. You couldn’t care less what happens to you or your writing.

In one way, not caring can be a blessing when you’re waiting to hear back from agents. If you don’t care, rejections can’t touch you. But then that just means listlessness has its hooks deep in you and there’s no way it’s letting you go. That thick gook again. (Ooh, I like saying the word ‘gook’ – it’s a synonym for ‘sludge’.)

A friend told me that listlessness is a state of the mind. Only you can pull yourself out of that gook/sludge. The best way I know how to, is to force yourself to be active. You might not feel like doing anything but you gotta do what you don’t want to.

It’s the only way to fight it. When listlessness grabs hold of you, writing gets hard. Sticking with it takes effort and courage.

So stick with it. You’ll be better for it.


S.R. McKade



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