Thursday, June 19, 2014

The Frustration of a Blank Page by Heather Reid

The cursor winks, mocking me as it looms above the blank page.

“Come on. Do it. Write something.”

Dark and evil it blinks, a beacon of my own inadequacy, each beat a challenge.

“I dare you.”

Fear grips me, anger too.  My mind is blank. I wipe sweat from my forehead with a sleeve. I take a sip of water, to ease the dryness in my mouth. Ideas swirl through my thoughts, I grab at them, one by one examining them in my mind, then throw each back into the ether. None of them are good enough. None of them worthy of the demands of that damned cursor. I curse. Damn you. I look at the clock. 12:20 pm. Time and the cursor are in cahoots with their taunts.

It’s Wednesday already and this week has been a train wreck of distractions, stress, and personal tragedy. My writing goals sit un-attained and all I really want to do is give the cursor the finger and escape into a game of Dragon Age and devour a bar of chocolate.

“Quitter.” The cursor sneers.

Heat rises in my cheeks. I grit my teeth. I am not a quitter.

There’s only one thing that can guarantee our failure, and that’s if we quit.–Craig Breedlove

The cursor stares at me, shocked.

Magic is believing in yourself, if you can do that, you can make anything happen.” Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

I start to write.

Keep on beginning and failing. Each time you fail, start all over again, and you will grow stronger until have accomplished a purpose – not the one you began with perhaps, but one you’ll be glad to remember.–Anne Sullivan

 Not my own words, at first.

Other people and things can stop you temporarily. You’re the only one who can do it permanently. –Zig Ziglar

I will not let the blank page, that blinking cursor, win.

All that is necessary to break the spell of inertia and frustration is this: Act as if it were impossible to fail. That is the talisman, the formula, the command of right about-face which turns us from failure to success.–Dorthea Brande

Act as if it were impossible to fail, act as if it were impossible to fail, act as if it were impossible to fail…the mantra for today. The thing that’s getting me through this blank page is the encouragement found in the words and the works of others. It’s the friends that I’ve made online, the support from my peers and family and the belief that I have a calling. This passion for the written word isn’t for naught. There is poetry in my soul aching to be released. I must learn to trust it. I grab onto that idea. I hold it close and let it feed me the determination to never give up, to act as if it were impossible to fail. I open myself up and let the words pour onto the page, without fear, without limits. What is there to lose?

You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed if you don’t try.–Beverly Sills

What talisman or formula do you use to break the inertia and frustration of the blank page? I would love to hear your thoughts. Keep writing, all! Harness the poetry and the passion in your soul and never give up.

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