Meta-Post

So yesterday I just couldn’t. I thought about posting all day. As I said goodbye to friends and juggled kids and food and trash and conversations and clean up I actually had moments when I was thinking about what I should post. I was so deeply in my personal reality, the virtual space of my blog seemed like another land that I’d have to visit before I went to sleep, but after my goodbye to NYC friends Open House. I reflected on what it meant to write in the midst of personal responsibilities and commitments. I thought the only way to do things like that without seeming completely selfish and anti-social (isolating myself in the middle of a party to write) or inhuman (snorting cocaine or downing no-doze to stay awake after being on my feet making, doing, and cleaning up a party) would be to wake up before everyone and abscond to a place that doesn’t exist because it would have to be open at 5am (Where’s that 24 hour Denny’s on my block when i need it?)! All this is to say that blogging everyday and writing, nonetheless, is a commitment that I am learning from, even when I’m not ACTUALLY doing it.

Or we could say that all these thoughts were doing it. I remember watching the documentary The Woodmans about two artist parents who’d lost their potentially more talented artist daughter before her career had completely taken off (You should see it because it’s beautiful, haunting, and twisted… trailer is embedded above). What’s important to this post, however, is a process oriented reflection by George Woodman who remarked during the film that you, “go to your studio every day, and if inspiration doesn’t arrive, ‘sharpen pencils’ until it does.” Yesterday, I was “sharpening pencils.”

I also recall an academic think piece I read several years ago that mentioned the productive, silent thought processes that are part of the writing process, i.e., you can be walking around thinking about your writing and that counts as writing. All this is to say two things: First, I think these reflections on my process are going to keep coming up on this blog. They are part of the way my thoughts wander in my overcommitted, but mindful (by my estimation) life. Second, I’d like to use this post to claim that while I did not post yesterday, I was thinking about what I should post on and instead of posting about my family’s goodbye Open House, I am posting about my thoughts about blogging DURING my family’s goodbye Open House. We are always writing. 

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7 thoughts on “Meta-Post

  1. I loved this. Blogging for me is often filled with this kind of anxiety. What will I blog about? When will I have time to write? And then I spend my time away from writing thinking about and mentally composing that writing.
    On a more academic note, you should read Paul Prior and Jody Shipka’s piece, “Chronotopic Lamination: Tracing the Contours of Literate Activity.” (Maybe you’ve seen this already?) It’s available through open access here: http://wac.colostate.edu/books/selves_societies/prior/ They study the writing processes of academic writers basically to say exactly that. We’re always writing.

    • Thanks for the ref, amber. I looked at this back when we were working on the grant, but didn’t make the connection (duh?!) here. I’m a bit of a process junkie (probably the practitioner inquirer (word?) in me). My writing group friend Jason has also done really interesting work on writing process and the creative process interviewing writers across disciplines about their process. It’s not situated in literacies research per se, but it’s good stuff and you can download a lot of his work here at https://hunter-cuny.academia.edu/JasonWirtz (You have to teach me how to put a link into a comment reply 🙂

      • The link happened automatically. 🙂 And thanks for the reference. I’ll take a look at his work.

  2. This is exactly how I’ve been feeling…I’m one day behind on my 30 day challenge, so I’m about to blog back to back posts…although it gives me a bit of anxiety, just knowing that I’ve made this commitment, has also forced me to heighten my senses and look at what inspires me most.

    • So true. It’s forcing me to curate (hence the most recent post about things I thought of writing about, but didn’t).

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