I have not written consistently recently. There’s not much I HAVE done consistently recently –except use the same two words in back to back sentences only revering the order – isn’t that some sort of palindrome?
Not BLOG posts, jokes or grocery lists – which gets me into a boatload of trouble.
Too often – the last few months – I have allowed distractions to keep me from producing more than a few jokes here or there when a “spark” of inspiration has struck.
There has been no, none, zippo, zilch concentrated effort. That sentence started off being longer but you know what? ZERO effort completely sums up what I have done for months.
Some of that can be attributed to a nagging pain I have – no, not my M-I-L – my knee. But that is only partly to blame.
Most of it has to do with being away from comedy; being away from clubs and other joke writers/tellers.
Like most things – it’s the direct result of getting out of the habit of doing what I was doing when things were going in the right direction.
So, I put together a list of the 5 things I have to change in order to get my writing back on track and I thought they may help you too.
NUMBER 5 – GET AWAY FROM OTHER PEOPLE
This can be a tough one especially if you’re married with children – of course in those circumstances it can also be the one MOST desired! If you are Mw/C then ask for permission to go to a coffee shop, McDonald’s or even the library – though for me those places are TOO quiet – and just get away from your normal surroundings. Often for me, a change a scenery opens up a flood of stuff to write about even if I just start with what I am seeing – another reason the library is not good because all you see is books.
NUMBER 4 – READ A BOOK
So, go to the library – see what I did there? If you’re having difficulty generating ideas for material start a new book OR open to the middle of something and pick up wherever you turn to – Your mind will start work trying to figure out how the story got to this point to begin with. OK, now, that you’re engrossed in this fascinating new book that you’ve already finished half of…QUIT reading and start writing. And don’t complain about not finishing the book – maybe if you read a little faster…
NUMBER 3 – TURN OFF THE TELEVISION
No brainer right? This includes binge watch all the Dr. Who episodes you have on your DVR. The television is the enemy and must be defeated at all costs.
NUMBER 2 – GET OFF THE INTERNET
If television is the enemy then the internet is the Supreme Commander of the most evil army in the known universe. Imagine Darth Vader, The Green Goblin and Oprah Winfrey leading coordinated attacks on your home well allow me to re-introduce you to Darth “Facebook” Vader – good deep down WAY waaaaay down, you’re better off just tossing the remains on an open pyre. The Green “Twitter” Goblin – so evil he can throw pumpkin bombs at you in 140 character bursts and then there’s Oprah “Netflix” Winfrey. Like her twisted cousin the DVR Netflix Winfrey will suck your time away and before you realize what’s happened you’ll be half way through the third season of LOST – and you already watched it – twice!
NUMBER 1 – JUST WRITE
Plain and simple stop reading this, stop complaining, stop making excuses and stop doing anything that is not putting words to paper – unless you write on a computer then shut-up and start typing. There is NO other way to begin writing, no other way to break out of the habit of NOT writing than to simply sit down and start. If you cannot think a of anything right off the bat then start with “I can’t think, I can’t think, I can’t think, I can’t think, I can’t think, I can’t think, I can’t think, I can’t think, I can’t think, I can’t think, I can’t think, I can’t think, “ until you THINK of something other than “I can’t think “. This may not immediately produce your next closing joke it may not even lead to a throw away one liner but it will lead to your mind working and generating ideas and THAT will lead to something – eventually.
P.S. I really like Oprah – no, no I don’t but if you liked this post or just like me feel free to “LIKE” my Facebook page to the left. It’s easy and it makes my lack of self-esteem get just a little higher!
I also have some other thoughts on writing – click here or here.
What keeps you from writing? How do you get started after a hiatus? Step up to the mic and sound off! This is, after all, an open mic.