On facing the blank page

There are days as a writer when you wake up empty. Inspiration eludes you. You may have a temperamental muse. You may find yourself up against a deadline (self-imposed or otherwise). Your mind may be mush because you stayed up working until 3 a.m. the night before. Whatever the reason, the page remains blank.

Today was one of those days for me.

These types of days can be very difficult for a writer. Suddenly you find yourself ruminating on what came before, second guessing every choice you made, rather than looking ahead at the work you should be doing. In these moments it can be really easy to give in, to walk away for the day, but in my case it was always better to force myself to face the blank page.

Some of my best work came in those moments, when I managed to claw my way out of my own head—because that’s what it is most of the time, a case of self-sabotage.

For days now, I’ve been trying to find the time to write. I kept telling myself I was too busy, that there was simply too many other things that needed to be done (there always is) and that there wasn’t enough hours in a day to do them in (there really aren’t), but I realized a few minutes ago that I was just avoiding the obvious – my temperamental muse was eluding me.

I could see him sitting in the recesses of my mind dressed from head to toe in one of his impeccable suits, his right ankle resting gingerly over his left knee, ice blue eyes staring right through me, with a hint of a smirk touching his lips.

He taunts me in a way only he can—striking at my weakest point as if to say, what would you be without me?

But the real question is, what would he be without me? After all, I created him.

Facing the blank page is difficult, but chances are you’ll seldom be disappointed with the result. This may not have been the post I had envisioned a few days ago, but I promise you it wiped the smirk right off of his beautiful face.

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