This feels about right.

I finally managed to build up some momentum last night. I made a list. I actually crossed a few things off it. They were small steps, but every step helps, right? 

The task of the evening was moving all of my current writing projects over from the free writing software into the pro writing software: a task that I worried might involve hand transcribing hundreds of pages of text from one program to another. Luckily, thanks to the internet, I learned there was an easier way to export/import straight into the new script format, so the task only took a few minutes at a time. The only hitch was that the new software would occasionally misinterpret a character and their dialogue as a scene heading and action. This meant another forty minutes of reformatting, but all things considered it was easier than retyping the whole script. 

Scripts, actually. 

Turns out I’m building quite a slate. I found myself rereading one unfinished project with some trepidation, fearing that I would think it foolish in retrospect, but I was edified to discover that I still felt the charm. Maybe I’ll get around to finishing it yet: every time I lose momentum on a project I worry that I’m never going to get back to it and that it will pile onto the heap of unfinished works that I drag around behind me like a ball and chain. 

At any rate it felt good to be back to work. The fallow time between projects might be necessary, but it isn’t much fun: there’s always a tiny part of my brain rattling around in the empty space after the muse leaves like a lost puppy worried that it will never come back again. Do I define myself by my work? Maybe. It’s not that I don’t know who I am without my work: I have plenty of interests outside of my work to occupy my time, but rather I feel like my work gives me an outlet to the parts of myself that I would otherwise never experience. There are parts of me that long for chaos and adventure, while my “real” self likes the comfortable order of routines.  Without order I would go nowhere fast, but without the adventure of my creative work Jack would be a dull boy indeed. 

At the moment I seem to have struck exactly the right balance of routine and creativity. It’s difficult to explain to people how edifying I find my office job exactly because it is so unimaginative. It requires just the right amount of focus to keep me engaged for hours on and in which I don’t have to give a single thought to whether or not I’m doing the right thing or using my time wisely, or whether or not people like my work subjectively. It doesn’t involve feelings. I can save those up for creative works in the precious evening hours. 

Will this sense of satisfaction last? Probably not. At some point I’m going to have to share all this creative work with the wider world, after all, and it’ll be right back to all the judgy-feely distractions that I struggled with in the past, but for now it’s just about right. 

~ by Gwydhar Gebien on June 2, 2017.

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