Ah, the blank screen. Something I've become accustomed to seeing when I write articles for SkyBlue Window. The screen doesn't stay blank long, though. I transcribe interviews with artists, writers, and museum curators and watch the word count swell to 1,500... 1,700... 2,000 words. Instead of struggling with what to say, I wonder how I'm going to include everything the interviewee talked about without dumping a novella in my editor's lap. So far, 12 articles in, it's worked out. Maybe the stories I have to leave out of the finished article are like smooth stones I get to collect and appreciate later.
I've been avoiding doing my own writing for a long time. I've not been too busy to write. I just haven't done any. (Blah blah blah hashtag guilt self-flagellation blame.) For a little while, I was making art (i.e., trading written art for visual) and posting pictures of finished chalk drawings on Instagram, but that faded away too. Last night, for the first time in a few weeks, I worked on an art project and stayed up far too late as a result. I was treated to the freedom and joy I find in expression, the ahhh moment that sidles up to my brain and says The world is about to start making sense again.
I'm feeling terribly restless again, contemplating moves out of state (plans that are in no way thoroughly thought out or likely to happen) and feeling a slight panic that I'm not doing The Thing(s) I'm Supposed to Be Doing. I'm working as a freelance writer and editor but I still refer to myself as unemployed. I know I need to stop doing that. I have a job. Two jobs and even more jobs if I've picked up a petsitting gig or a project for my dad. They just don't look like Real Jobs™ with the loafers, attache cases, bad coffee, and irritating coworkers. They look like flip flops, my laptop shoved in whatever bag I find first, an iced white mocha, and tuning out valley girls at the local coffeehouse with music and headphones. I prefer my life now, to be sure, but I'm also still clinging to the warmth and guarantee of a biweekly paycheck and benefits. It's hard to be all Fuck yeah, freedom and writing! when I just want to go to the doctor without going broke.
I like my new schedule a lot, although I guess it's not that new anymore. I dress casually, rarely have to wake up to an alarm, and keep getting writing assignments that are interesting. Much like when I wrote for NUVO, I'm meeting artists and learning about Indy's art community. This time around, though, the articles are longer and I'm able to nestle into a subject, which makes me happy. I'm pleased with the content I'm producing and still tickled that I'm being paid to write. The restlessness comes from living downstairs from The Most Inconsiderate Man Children on Earth. I know it's temporary but I also like a deadline. Just let me know where the finish line is and I can plan accordingly. Aimless wandering is for that kid from Family Circle.