Jan 242014

I am struggling to write at the moment. I have lots of ideas and have even been organised enough to jot a few of them down, but the actual writing is like sludge; it’s there but is grey and cold and struggles to take form.

Much of this is due to time. Work is demanding and creeping more and more into my evenings and weekends. The kids are arguing a lot, which I find wearing, and there just seems to be SO much to do. The list grows like ivy over my days and suddenly I find it has taken over and feel strangled by it.

I feel guilty setting myself aside time to write when I ‘should’ be attending to other things.

I also feel physically run down. As I write this it is 1pm and I am exhausted. Really, I could lay my head on the table and sleep and sleep. My skin looks dull, my nails are splitting and I seem to have a constant headache rumbling around my skull like a thunder-cloud in a valley.

I am not sure what the answer is; time, I suspect. That precious commodity that eludes so many of us.

I am linking up with Stephanie from Beautiful Misbehaviour who has launched Writing Warriors for people like me who have to fight for their right to write (rhyme, homophones and alliteration all in one sentence!). A chance to re-group each week and spur each other on. I also promised I would include a picture of my desk where I try to write although, truth be told, a lot of my writing occurs in the kitchen which is my little sanctuary. If it was big enough I would move my desk in there and be very happy.

my desk

  3 Responses to “Sludge”

  1. Ah I like your desk, a proper desk, not the child’s desk I am writing at just now! You have lots of lovely space there.

    The way you describe your list growing over your days like ivy is something I can really relate to. I am not working just now so I don’t have that to contend with, I remember how tired I was when I was teaching full time. But the house swamps me, I loath housework and I feel like the house and the kids are always demanding my time. It really does feel like being strangled sometimes.

    Weirdly I am just working on a post about why we shouldn’t feel guilt about writing. It should be ready next week. I think it is a part of taking care of yourself, not something to feel bad about.

    I wish I had some easy answers for you but all I can really say is this time will pass. I hate the advice that you often get that goes oh if you wanted to write you would find time to do it or we all get the same 24 hours a day. Bollocks we do. Sometimes our days are swallowed by commitments or drudgery or work or both and it doesn’t make a damn bit of difference how much we want to write, there are only 24 hours in a day and we only have a certain amount of energy each day.

    Make sure you are taking good care of your health, having had a fight last year with post viral fatigue after I ignored my own body shutting down on me I know how easy it is to keep plodding on when we really need to get some rest. And write the sludge. Most of my writing is sludge anyway, it’s like having a bad running day, you just keep working through it and hope that your legs are better next week.

    Sending you happy time thoughts!

  2. Your desk looks gorgeous! I’m now wondering if I should create my own writing space. I just use the sofa, the kitchen table, the coffee table… wherever looks the most appealing at the time.

    I can identify with the lack of time. I’m currently trying to extend my maternity leave after having my third child as I feel like there’s not enough ‘me’ to go around! I want to be a a great mum to all three of my kids who all need me in different ways, I want to be a half-way decent wife and I want to make sure the house doesn’t descend into wrack and ruin. And I want, no, NEED, to write. Writing feels selfish in a way but, on the other hand it makes me so happy which has a massive impact on how I am as a mother, so in that way it’s not selfish at all. Unless I’m deluding myself! Anyway, I didn’t mean to waffle on about me – just wanted to let you know you’re not alone!

    And I’d love to have the answer to the sludge but like Stephanie said perhaps just write it anyway. We all tend to be our own worst critics so it could be that you are not nearly as sludgy as you think. Or perhaps something beautiful might be hiding amidst the sludge? Even if it’s just a lovely piece of juicy carrot hiding in some unappealing, mass-produced vegetable soup, it could be worth discovering. That’s a terrible metaphor, sorry!

    Wishing you lots of rest and good writing days! #writingwarriors

  3. It’s the time of year as well, I suspect. Cold, wet, meh. I try to exercise every day (well, most days) and I try to make that an outside thing because the combination of daylight, fresh air and exercise seems to help get my energy levels up and as a result I feel more creative! Just be reassured that this sludgy time will pass… x

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