Sunday, January 07, 2007

Write in it

A friend recently asked why I don't write as much anymore and I was pretty stymied by the question because I do still like to write, I just... don't. Part of it is a discipline issue. I don't have the discipline to sit at the computer any more after being at work all day and typing and researching and writing. I used to think I'd never get sick of the computer or the Internet, but there you have it -- there are some nights when I come home and don't even turn on the computer (hence the lack of bloggity lately).

But I think a lot of my non-writing has to do with the lack of community. When I first got online, I found the Story Exchange (Hi Harry!) and there was a vibrant community and lots of talent and sparkling wit and just a lot of support there. It was a lot of fun to login into the site, read the new stories, discuss them, and talk about writing-related matters on the forum, as well as esoteric topics like spumante. Then there was ASC, Trek fandom's gathering place (or at least one of them), and there were tons of very cool people there, and again, vibrant community with lots of ideas flying back and forth. It's easy to write in an environment that's full of energy and ideas. And honestly, I wanted nothing more than to be a part of those communities and for membmership, I had to write.

These days, the writing forums I used to frequent are dead or close to dead. Many of the people I used to talk to have moved on to other things or have changed their pennames and left no forwarding addresses. My RL is also a lot busier and I don't have the time or patience to be online for hours anymore doing the work required to establish a presence and personality in an online forum or develop online relationships beyond the ones I already have and maintain. And so I don't write as much because the motivation I had -- to be part of a group -- has essentially evaporated and the intrinsic motivation has all but disappeared.

But I have been feeling the urge to write again more and more lately and there are a few non-fiction essay ideas ruminating in my head. One of these days, I'll just force myself to sit down and write them down. I've found that the hardest part is just getting started. Once I get past the first few paragraphs, it's a little like flying and the words and ideas take over and there's no feeling quite like it in the world. I'll keep you posted.

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