Writing About Writing

Coming Soon: Unprompted and Unrequested Reviews

As I toy with where I want to take this site and blog for the New Year, I’ve been at a bit of a loss just what to write about. That was probably obvious since my relaunch post was weeks ago (sorry). I know I need to write more, write anything, polish up my skills. But it’s been so long since I’ve written something in a non-academic setting that it feels like my knuckles are covered in rust.

The other day, I hand-wrote a list of pet sitting instructions and had to take intermittent breaks because my hands cramped so severely. I had a moment of pause, considering what happened to who I used to be: The girl who refused to type her notes and painstakingly hand-wrote everything. I would then retype what I’d written as an exercise in memorization.

It’s not that I used to write stories by hand, though I have immense respect for those who do. Rather, I saw how becoming so accustomed to the new way of doing things (I’m wholly reliant on my laptop now, replacing color-coded notebooks with meticulously organized computer files) caused physical pain when going back to my old ways.

I had a moment of fear: What if getting back into writing would be a similar experience? What if sitting down and creating for myself, not for a grade, would, for lack of a better metaphor, cramp my brain? A silly thought, but there nonetheless.

It’s not as though I’ve lost the ability to write. The other night, in a fit of insomnia, I wrote an entire story without the faintest idea of where the plot would go. I don’t even know where the idea came from, but the words flowed out. I enjoyed writing the story, and though it’s quite rough around the edges, and the middle, and everything in-between, I’m pleased to start working through and revising it.

I’ve ventured far from my intent with this post, which is to announce how I will be going to what so many have done before me: Talk about things I’ve read, listened to, and had thoughts about. I wrote in my last post that I wanted to expand the scope of this blog, and perhaps in the process make it more tediously personal, so this seems the natural area to start.

With the time freed up by no homework, I find myself reading and listening more than I have in years. Hopefully, by talking about what I liked in these stories, I can start applying what I learn to my own work. It’s well-documented that reading more means better writing, and for obvious reasons, so let’s lean on that.

The inherent caveat: I don’t expect everyone to agree with me, or even anyone to. I’ll be the first to admit that my tastes run quite askew and inconsistent. These are just thoughts, and if it leads someone to read or listen to something new, that’s a lovely bonus.

I’ve got the start of a review written, and already know what the next will be about. I’ve never written anything like a review before, so I’m taking my time with it, but it’ll be up soon. As to the insomnia-fueled story I mentioned, that’ll also be going up at some point—after a lot of revision. Sleepy Emily enjoys ellipses far too much.

Bye for now!

Side note: I’m going to do this new thing at the end of each blog post, where I put what I read last, am reading now, and will be reading next. Because that’s fun.

Last Read:  Alice Isn’t Dead – Joseph Fink
Reading Now: The Girl With All The Gifts – M.R. Carey
Reading Next: Dracula – Bram Stoker

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