Howdy, howdy! How is everyone doing? What kinds of things have you found to help you pass the time during the quarantine? I’ve been listening to a lot of older music. Stuff from my teen years. I hate to call it old, but late ’90s to 2004ish is 16+ years ago. I’m getting old. I know. It’s before I got into Japanese and Korean music. It’s before I even got into Lifehouse and James Blunt and other groups that lean more towards the soft and sappy. These are my depressed and angry teenage anthems. The songs that made me feel less alone. And they still make me feel better. I think they always will. Anyway, I don’t have much to talk about on the writing front, so I thought I’d share some music with you.
1. “I Feel Fine” by the Riddlin’ Kids. It was released in 2001. I never really got into any of their other music, but I really liked this particular song. Maybe it’s because I felt alone a lot.
2. “Sympathetic” by Seether. I first heard it when I bought Disclaimer (2002). It quickly became one of my favorites. A lot of Seether songs still rank among my favorites. “Fine Again” and “Broken” from the same album. “The Gift” and “Truth” from Karma And Effect. “Like Suicide” and “Walk Away from the Sun” from Finding Beauty In Negative Spaces. I could go on, but I think that’s enough of them.
3. “Unwell” by Matchbox Twenty from More Than You Think You Are (2002). They’re one of the more poppy bands I liked back then and a lot of their songs just made me happy. “Disease” from the same album. “Mad Season” and “Bent” from Mad Season. “Long Day” and “Push” from Yourself Or Someone Like You. But “Unwell” will always be number one.
4. “A Quiet Mind” by Blue October from History For Sale (2003). I don’t even know where to begin with them. Their music got me through a lot. Aside from “A Quiet Mind” there’s also “Inner Glow” from the same album. “She’s My Ride Home” and “Into the Ocean” from Foiled. “Picking up Pieces” and “Jump Rope” from Approaching Normal. The list goes on, but I’ll stop here.
5. “Pieces” by Sum 41 from Chuck (2004). I enjoy a lot of their music, but this song is by far my favorite. They didn’t exactly play my favorite genre, so I never got attached to them the same way I did other bands. Mostly I got attached to specific songs from similar bands. “Adam’s Song” by Blink182 for example. But I won’t dive too far into those songs.
So, yeah. I’m spending a lot of time doing the same stuff I did as a teenager: listening to music and reading. It might not be productive, but it makes me feel better and that’s all that really matters. What makes you feel better these days? What are some of your teenage anthems or songs that got you through those years? As always, feel free to share your thoughts or comments here or on my social media pages!
Hello, hello! I hope everyone has a wonderful Valentine’s Day or Singles Awareness Day or Excuse for Chocolate Day or whatever you want to call Thursday. I have no plans, but I do have chocolate. Huzzah! Anyway, that’s tomorrow. Today is about confessions of a writerly nature. Namely, I haven’t done anything productive since January 20th (the day before the sickness of doom took over). Yeah, I can blame the illness for about two weeks worth of laziness, but what about the last week and a half? I had no excuse for vegging out. So, I thought I would talk a little about what some people call writer’s block and my plan to deal with it.
First off, I want to say that I don’t particularly like the term “writer’s block.” It sounds like something that just happens, something you have no control over. For some people, that might be true. Other people might enjoy having the excuse, being able to say that their lack of writing time is out of their control. Not me. I fully acknowledge that when I’m not writing, I’m usually procrastinating. It’s rare for me to run out of words, at least on fictional things. Motivation is my biggest issue. And sometimes, I admit that the procrastination bug digs deep and stubbornly refuses to let go. It’s what’s happening right now. My motivation is low due to an influx of rejections I’ve been expecting (because of my year-end submissions that are just now being looked at). It’s hard to want to write and revise when you keep getting told “it’s not for us, but good luck elsewhere.” So, when the opportunity to procrastinate presented itself, I didn’t bother fighting it.
However, it’s about time for me to get over myself and get back to writing regularly. Before the sickness decided to knock out all my will to work, I was actually struggling back into a decent rhythm. How? I joined a sprint group and one of the leaders happens to write around the same time I do during the week (early evening). So, I have the support of checking in after each sprint and being held accountable. Even if the leaders aren’t doing sprints, I can still create my own sprints and see if anyone wants to join me. It’s a super helpful group for me and I plan to get back into it this week.
Aside from the sprint group, I need to find other forms of motivation as well, otherwise I know I’ll eventually fall back into the procrastination pit. The problem is that I don’t respond well to self-appointed rewards. Mostly because I usually forgo the rewards. I promise myself anime or manga and by the time I get everything done, I’m either too lazy to find something to watch/read or it’s time for dinner and TV with Dad. I guess all I can do is keep trying different things until I find something that works for me.
What about you? How do you battle writer’s block or the procrastination bug? Feel free to share your thoughts and comments here or on my social media pages!