I think this is substantial enough. I’ll just be working to tighten the writing and add to the fluency.
This morning, I plopped into my chair, eager to begin my writing practice. I had an amazing thread: students hate writing because they’re forced to write on topics they don’t care about. With a blank screen before me, I just stared. I couldn’t think of a strong lead. My eyes drifted to the comics taped to the edges of my monitor. I fiddled with my cell phone, trying to fix it. Other websites grabbed my attention. Consciously, I wanted to write, but when everything is an excuse not to, that’s a sign I didn’t want to.
Apparently the problem isn’t that students aren’t getting the right topics. I chose this one but locked up anyways. Now, I don’t know which way to take this. Yet another obstacle.
That’s not unusual, that a piece should take its own course. As a writer, it seems right that I should listen. Intuition is often the best guide, and perhaps words should just flow.
My mind fills with reasons why I can’t do this. Perhaps the real problem exists beyond the original scope of this piece. Perhaps the real fallacy is that all problems stem from one. Perhaps I shouldn’t have started this practice on meta-writing.
Many people have difficulty writing. William Zinsser, a former magazine writer and Yale professor, explains his own difficulties in “On Writing Well.” Asked what it was like to be a writer, he responds, “…writing wasn’t easy and wasn’t fun. It was hard and lonely, and the words seldom just flowed.” While a scary omen, I feel better that the best have it tough as well.
Writing isn’t just difficult because of something; it’s difficult because of everything. While it might be just one skill, many obstacles complicate the process.
I thought I had it beaten already. I had the will to write. Apparently I only had the will to sit down.