CW: This article contains references to mental illness and bereavment/grief.
If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram, you may have noticed that I’m going through a pretty rough patch. For various reasons, including the loss of my childhood pet cat over the weekend, my mental health has taken a bit of a downturn. For some reason, however, I’m still expecting myself to maintain a daily word count of at least 1,667 words with NaNoWriMo.
Up until this point, writing my NaNo was one of the best times of the day. Now, I want to do so many things other than writing. I’ll sit to write in my NaNo file, and then I’ll feel this reaction of just no. Instead, I’ll go on Twitter or YouTube or Pinterest instead of writing, even if it has nothing to do with my WIP. We can analyze the psychological reasons for this to no end, but it’s frustrating when I know that I’ll feel so accomplished if I finish NaNoWriMo, but I still don’t want to do it.
It’s moments like this when I have to understand why I’m doing NaNoWriMo. I was hoping to use this as a jump-start towards my novel, and it would be nice if I had a finished first draft at the end of this, but I also can’t be this critical on myself during the first draft. Writing was always meant to be a way to express myself healthily, and it can’t be that way if I’m forcing it.
At this point, I’m just trying to take it one day at a time and be compassionate with myself, regardless of whether or not I make the word count for that day. It would be nice if I can win NaNoWriMo this year, but I’m not going to beat myself up over it if I don’t. I’m hoping it will get better as time goes on, and that writing can eventually help me through this time.
Thank you for listening, and I’ll see you next time!
Well met, and welcome back to the blog! It’s definitely been a while since I last posted an article, and I wanted to get back into blogging with an article about something I’ve been working on for a while: music.
As some of you may know, I’m working towards digital composition and music, and I would love to release my tracks soon. I wanted to talk about some musicians that have inspired me over the years into writing the songs that I do.
Which musicians and artists inspire you? Let me know in the comments below! I hope you enjoyed this article! Until next time!
Welcome and well met back to the blog! I understand it’s been a while, but my life has been really chaotic these past few months.
I wanted to write this blog post from a thought I wrote down in my journal just now. I’ve recently been taking steps to achieve my creative goals, and I’ve been dealing with self-doubt and insecurity that made me almost forget why I create in the first place.
For one thing, I had a dilemma with determining where “I don’t feel ready” is no longer helpful. For example, I don’t feel ready to release my music because the audio software I’m using has a pretty steep learning curve, and I feel my work can be better if I learn more about the tools at my disposal. I think that’s reasonable. But not feeling ready because I’m scared to take the plunge and possibly face judgment from others? Where is that line ultimately drawn? I don’t know if that answer’s an easy one.
On top of that, I have observed that we as artists hear so much chatter about what’s popular and what’s not, and we sometimes wonder whether we even stand a chance. I imagine for a lot of people, that can be really discouraging. I know for my creative works, they are not mainstream so while I get to focus on a much narrower target audience, I also worry that my niche is so specific that I’ll go unnoticed forever. I don’t think that’s a healthy way to look at this.
One thing that helps me is to remember the “why”—why I’m actually doing this. While it would be nice to make my creativity into a career, the main driving force for all my endeavors is for self-expression. I’m doing this because I never saw what I wanted to read or listen to and thought, “Well, then, I’ll make my own!” This is why I write my stories and poetry. This is why I work towards my podcast. This is why I compose. I have worlds inside me that come out in my music and writing, and I create to share them with everyone.
I hope you enjoyed this blog post! If you want to share what helps you get through self-doubt, or have any questions, please let me know in the comments below! Thank you for reading!
Welcome back, everyone!
It’s been an interesting month, getting ready to go back home for the summer and trying to gather the tools I’d need for a portable music workspace, as well as finishing the first draft of what I hope will be my debut novel before sending it off to the mercy of my alpha readers. On top of all this going on, I had a new idea. (Now, keep in mind: I have more than 30 story ideas I still need to complete and publish, countless song and poem ideas, and now I have this. I’m laughing at myself as I type this article.)
I was researching podcasts for my journey home, and I came across the Girl in Space podcast. Not only is the podcast funny and intriguing, but also one of the merchandise listings has a reference to the “po-tay-toes” line from Lord of the Rings. I was sold, and I was also inspired to write a fictional podcast of my own.
Right now, the idea is not even in alpha stage; I still need to write the first few episodes and gather the tools to record and edit (I don’t even have a microphone right now). So once I am prepared to go on that adventure, I hope to get that up and running. Right now, I feel comfortable sharing that it’d be a steampunk/urban fantasy fictional podcast for young adults in the form of an audio diary. I’m at a really chaotic time in my life right now, so I can’t guarantee a timeline for the podcast, but it’s definitely something that I want to work on and keep working on.
So, what do you think?Would you want to listen to a podcast like this? Do you think I’m way in over my head? Please let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading, and I hope to be back on here soon!
Right now, I’m trying to finish the first draft of a story that I’m hoping will be my first novel. As a result, I want to bring attention to the five books that inspired me as a writer.
I’m one of those people that can’t choose a favorite book; for me, choosing one favorite song/book/movie/TV show is like asking a parent to choose their favorite child. Also, I’m always reading other books so I might read a new book tomorrow that seriously inspires a story idea or influences my writing voice. As of right now, these are the five books that have inspired me the most as a writer:
What books inspired you as a writer? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading!
It’s been a while since I’ve posted to the blog, but I wanted to share some news I’m really excited about!
I now have an artist account with Bandcamp!
I am still in the process of gathering supplies for a more portable studio, so I don’t have any tracks on there just yet, but I’m really excited for this step closer to being involved in music. I already have some ideas lined up for some tracks to produce, so I’m very much eager to get started!
One thing I’m conflicted about is in which direction I want to go with the type of music I want to create. My two main styles of music are songs that may remind one of Celtic Woman, Enya, or the YouTuber Vindsvept, and then songs that may remind one of Nightwish, Evanescence, or Epica. From a production standpoint, it would probably be easier to produce more ambient-type music, at least at first, but I’m open to branching out into other subgenres or sounds in the future.
I imagine I’ve changed a lot as I’ve grown older, but my passions for music and writing have been constant. I can only hope that I am one step closer to making my passions a huge part of my future. If you have any ideas or advice, please leave comments down below! Thanks for reading!
Yesterday, I decided to write in my notebook instead of going straight into my computer, and I was surprised at how easily the writing came to me. Call it what you will—being in the zone, being in one’s element—for this article, I’ll call it being in a state of “flow”, since words just flow from my mind to the page with hardly any effort. I had to admit, it was a welcome feeling to be back in this state of flow, since it doesn’t happen every time I write, and because I’ve been trying to work with writing on my computer, it’s been a while since I felt this way while writing.
As I’ve described in my poems “The Paper Witch” and “Homecoming“, when I get into this state of flow, it feels nothing short of magical. Minutes feel like seconds, and sometimes my words scrawl together because I want to get them onto the page as fast as I can think them. Actually, as I read that last sentence, “think” doesn’t seem to be the right word, as there doesn’t seem to be much of a cerebral process when I’m in this state of mind. Words just happen. In this state of mind, I could easily go for hours without remembering to eat or use the ladies’ or drink water (not the healthiest situation, I agree, but that goes to show you how strong this state of flow can be), and as I was writing yesterday, I came very close to falling asleep from exhaustion as I sat with my notebook in bed, the words still coming despite being too tired to keep going. I can’t remember the last time I’ve felt this way when I wrote my stories on my computer, not even when I did NaNoWriMo last year, though I’m sure it’s happened before.
Since I’m on the move a lot, a notebook and pen would be more to pack, and may make my bag a bit heavier. In my opinion, though, it’s much more productive if I bring that notebook instead of having staring contests with my laptop or tablet; the laptop always wins. If I want to try to harness the feeling of the state of flow so I can be inspired to write as often as possible, maybe this was a sign to go back to writing on paper.
Do you prefer to write with paper or on the computer?
I imagine many writers and artists of all types have dealt with at least one instance in which inspiration proved fickle. Writer’s block has been the bane of my existence for the 15+ years I’ve been writing as a hobby, and for my first blog post, I would like to share how I deal with writer’s block.
Hopefully, this helps any fellow writers who are afflicted with writer’s block. Thank you for reading, and I hope to be back here soon!
Welcome and well met! I’m Morrigan Harker, and I write poetry for the website American Twilight. I currently live and work in Hunan Province, China, and I also am hoping to get started with digital music composing and visual art in the near future.
I’m not sure what I’ll post on this blog, but I hope to include writing tips and help my readers, even if it’s by making them smile. I also hope to post about my journey with digital composition and illustration—in my mind, if it has to do with my creative expression, it’s fair game.
I hope you enjoy reading my blog, and welcome again!
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