Hey everybody! If you’re a follower of this blog, you may have noticed the new look and the new name. Don’t worry. You’re still at ZenZone, but it’s undergoing a little rebranding experiment. It’s an idea that I’ve been tossing around for a little bit and now I’ve finally gotten the courage to test it out and see how I feel about it.
Now, you also may have noticed that there hasn’t been any Wednesday posts or Friday posts in a while. This is because finishing my first book and learning more about publishing brought up the nasty problem of how to balance my time between social media, marketing, reading, learning programming, meditation, and writing.
What was happening was that I often rushed around like a headless chicken on blog post days trying to make posts, and it wound up cutting into my writing time a lot because I’d procrastinate which led to more time wasted and trying to force myself to finish just led to more procrastination.
As a result that just led to a bunch of mediocre posts that I often don’t get the time to check on, or was just too burnt out to check correctly.
And for that I’m truly sorry.
In order to break the cycle of suffering, I decided to take a more mindful approach to the blog. Instead of doing a bunch of posts during the week, there will only be Meditative Mondays that are guaranteed (unless something happens that calls for a mid-week post, of course). Meditative Mondays are the ones that I enjoy most, so I’ll concentrate my efforts to try to make those better.
As for whether Wednesday and Friday will actually come back, I’m not sure. But if I do have the opportunity to put a good one up, I’ll certainly do my best to put it up for you guys. 🙂
Now The Actual Meditative Monday Part 😀
Tea? Check. Monday? Check. Existential thoughts? Check.
Alright people, let’s roll. It’s Meditative Monday.
And today, I’d like to talk about I wonder about a lot and I’m always trying to figure out different ways to solve.
How do you help people like their writing? How do you help someone else become comfortable on the page and have them tell anxiety, depression, or whatever insecurities they have to take a hike?
Now this isn’t a new topic here on the blog, but I do want to come at it in a newish way.
I had to self-reflect and ask myself why my personal anxieties don’t bug me. Now don’t take this to mean that I don’t have them. I do.
But I’ve realized that this tends to only affect me after I get up from my writing space when I’m surfing the web and indulging in some bit of negative news that I really shouldn’t be reading in the first place, or if I’m looking at reviews of books or looking at my sales dashboard.
Those goshdarn no-nos.
But writing time is bulletproof unfuckwithable time. Why? It kinda boiled down to one question for me.
How Do You View Writing?
Not just the project you’re working on right now, but writing in general?
Do you write sentences and then delete it because you think it sounds stupid? Do you stare at a blank screen to afraid to put anything down? Do you go over what you’ve written and just hate it? Do you constantly wonder who the heck is gonna read this shit?
All these thoughts are all yucky negatives. And I used to have do it too.
But I stopped having these thoughts somewhere around my second year of college when two things started happening.
One. I decided to step up and get better at writing.
This was simple enough. It was just a matter of read book x and practice until I had the concepts down.
Two. I stopped looking at writing as a peacock fest to show out and instead looked at it as a place to discover new things and to have fun.
This, I feel, is hard if you are not disciplined with writing and improving every day. It’s a case of that age old phrase “Idle hands are the devil’s playthings.”
It’s very hard to criticize yourself when you’re too busy being surprised at what your characters are doing on the page. It’s also hard to criticize yourself when you’re having a lot of fun and understand that you are still learning as a writer.
Treating writing as discovery is what made it a lot of fun for me. It made me more curious about the world and the people around me, and that curiosity, ironically, also made me better at writing because I became a lot more willing to experiment and explore even through my mistakes.
This is also why you have to admire kids. When we’re all little, we don’t care that our stick figure’s head is too big or small or if it makes Meryl Streep’s butt look too saggy.
Kids just do whatever they want and then they pick it up and show it to the world with more bravery than most of our adult selves have. And no inner voice telling them that it’s wrong or stupid.
They just enjoy it because it’s fun.
And we writers/ artists/ creatives forget that all the time.
But writing can be a positive space. It should be a positive space that you want to return to again and again. And that’s where treating writing as discovery shines.
It’s also why I’m a big advocate of freewriting. But now I’m starting to be fond of morning pages too! And different methods of journaling. Since most of us on here are writers already, journaling isn’t that much of a stretch from what we’re used to doing.
But whatever method you choose, try to relax, and don’t put too much pressure on yourself. No one has to see it. No one has to know. And even if you don’t want to journal, don’t worry about that manuscript being perfect. Worry about it getting done.
After all, no one can discover you if you’re not out there, can they? 😉