Insomnia. The joys. In case my sarcasm isn’t already apparent, it’s 5:49 AM and Microsoft Word 2013 won’t open because Windows 10 is being an asshole. So now, you get me, venting to the ether, because I really want to finish my novella and my computer is like, “no.” Kind of like this printer:


And now, the computer is blacking out, yay…let’s save this post while I reboot…

Reboot successful, and now Word is behaving after some virtual slapping around.

All this, of course, brings me to the issue of trust. Do I trust my PC right now? Absolutely not. But I also know that I don’t always trust myself when it comes to my PC, either.

It reminds me of something I read in Elizabeth Gilbert’s book, Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear. If you haven’t either bought this book or checked it out from your local library, I highly recommend it. Look how pretty the cover is:

In it, she talks a lot about trust with the external. For example, she asked her students if they loved writing, and all of them raised their hands. But when she asked if writing loved them back, all the hands dropped.

It got me thinking about whether I have a reciprocal relationship with my writing, and how often I can lose track of the fun in it if I’m not too careful. It’s enough of an issue that I’ve posted about it multiple times, even on other blogs

Sometimes, the writing will come, like water, and those times are the best, because it’s like I have superpowers–much like the first time I swam in a pool at sea level after living almost a decade at high altitudes. I could swim forever!

And then there are the days where writing (or editing, for that matter) is inexplicably stubborn, and I’d rather go out and try and pull those weeds out of the garden because that would cause less sweat and toil. It is then, like my fickle computer (which I’ve had to reboot again, hooray), that making progress feels like a journey worthy of Sisyphus.  

Of course, the easiest thing to do when the world seems insistent on working against you, is to despair. It’s a natural inclination for all of us, and nothing at all to be ashamed of. But the important part is, once we’re through that despair, we’re offered a chance to reassess. No, we cannot control the external forces that force us to shut down. But we can always reboot (and in my case, hope to all things holy that I saved everything first).

Everyone reboots in different ways. Some of us need to introvert from the world, hide under a comfortable blanket. Others, like me, vent to anyone listening, though this method of coping can become destructive if not kept in check. For example, I try not to vent about something without offering a possible solution (though, often, these solutions come from the very wise and wonderful people who have consistently been there for me over the years). If I have no solution, I can at least concentrate on what I can do in the moment. Breathe, for one, because despite everything, keeping that up is first and foremost for us all. Sometimes it means making myself take a break, which I’ll do today after this post. Regardless, as Elizabeth Gilbert says, it is possible to have a give-and-take relationship with the external, even when it seems to fight you every step of the way.

So, keep fighting my friends. Find the small pockets of sanity within our chaotic world this week, if you can, and await the magic on the horizon. After all, just because you can’t see it yet doesn’t mean it’s not there.

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