Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Does the written word remain?

I have been part of a fairly active book club for almost a year now. The book we are currently reading is The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger. The main female character, Clare, is an artist. In one small portion of the story that I just read she talks about the strain between being an artist and being able to support yourself and also allowing time to nurture your artistic side. It’s a difficult balance. I struggle with it myself and still haven’t found a way that works for me. I frequently feel as if my artistic side it starving because I don’t take the time to write or sew or doodle any more.

The last few years I have endeavored upon a writing adventure known worldwide as National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). What is NaNoWriMo you may ask? NaNoWriMo happens during the month of November and participants attempt to write a 50,000 word novel from scratch (more about it at nanowrimo.org). This is a mighty feat, one which have only attained once in the four times I have attempted it. To be honest, it’s my own fault. But I had a good excuse. I always have a good excuse for not doing the things I love. Mostly I’m sure it’s just pure laziness. And that’s why I continue to kick myself. The one year I did complete the goal I was working part time, no more than thirty hours a week, and was living mostly alone. Having more free time allowed me to concentrate on that 1700 words a day goal.

Now that I am working full time, have a 45 minute to an hour commute on each side of my 8 to 5 work day. I feel like I barely have time to do the things I need to do let alone the things I want to do. With that in mind, I frequently find myself not working on the artsy things I enjoy doing. Like sewing or writing and even art on occasion. I suppose this blog is a decent substitute for my lack of writing otherwise, but there is no substitute for thrill of creating something new and exciting that I am truly proud of.

So then the dichotomy remains. I will continue to create in spurts when the moment catches me just at a good point where I have enough time to follow through with it, or I will continue to not create at all. Sometimes I wish I could have the best of both worlds.

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