Tuesday, July 11, 2006

One Bad Blogger

I've been trying to figure out why lately I just don't feel that spark in my keyboard that I usually feel when I write.

Is it that I haven't read any books to blog about? No, I'm actually reading tonnes these days.

Is it that I'm tired? Dude, I'm always tired. It rarely slows me down.

Is it that life is busy, blah blah blah? That may have been the reason up until last week, but things are pretty smooth this week, so strike that one.

No, I think the problem is that I'm (temporarily, I hope) sick of my own words. Has this ever happened to you? You've spent all night chatting it up at a party, or all day presenting a workshop or lecturing to a group of people, and you get home and realize you're sick to death of the sound of your own voice? And worse, when you replay your mental tapes, you become increasingly convinced that everyone else must be sick of it, too. And then, in order to overcome the crippling delayed embarrassment that this realization has triggered, you resolve to change your ways and become... well, still yourself, but the best, quietest, most subdued version of yourself.

Do any of you know this phenomenon of which I speak? I'm not the only one, am I? (This is where you smile kindly and sympathetically and pretend to commiserate.)

While I'm sadly accustomed to experiencing word-shame due to my, er, verbal loquaciousness, this is the first time I've felt this way because of my writing. Between all the reports and presentation notes and other work-related writing AND the blogging, I just wish I'd shut up already.

And by now you're wishing the same thing.

This whingefest -- and not-so-thinly veiled cry for help -- has been brought to you by the letter Y and the number 0. And now back to your regularly scheduled internet.

19 comments:

Chris (mombie) said...

I have definitely felt that way, wishing I could figure out a way to stop the flow of my thoughts onto unsuspecting people.

However, I don't wish you would shut up, I wish you could beam yourself to my place so I could listen to you in person (and we could drink and eat very fattening and unhealthy things, of course).

Hmm, now I feel all stalker-y and creepy.

Ahem, I now return you to your regularly scheduled programming.

Tamara said...

I think the entire internet is feeling this way. Everyone's all social'ed out and sick of being witty and charming. Blogging is for winter.

Jagosaurus said...

I do feel this way sometimes, all evidence on my blog to the contrary. Actually, I feel less this way with writing than I do with talking. I often start to hear myself echoing in my head and realize how ridiculous and inane I sound and how bored my audience must be. God help them.

landismom said...

Yeah, I think everyone's slowed down due to the summer--I'm not just blogging less, I'm commenting less.

crabbykate said...

I feel this way a lot of the time, actually. My job involves me talking to people all damn day, so at the end of the day it's hard enough to read my little one a bedtime story (well, the reluctance could also have to do with the fact that she requests the same story read over and over and over).

... said...

Seriously, I simply CANNOT stand myself. But what can you do? I cant tell you how many times I get half-way thru a post and I have to resist typing "FOR THE LOVE OF PETE, SHUT YOUR YAP!" - yes, in all caps as well. But rest assured everyone I know quite likes your words and some even like the cut of your gib. It's a fact. Break up with yourself. Everyone wants what they can't have. In hours you'll be totally hot for yourself and enjoying key-razy make-up sex. Lucky.

Lady M said...

Totally know what you mean. On days where I spend the whole day writing at work, I'm out of words for blogging.

Lisa said...

I'm right there with you! And we're not the only ones. Seems like Blog Burnout is going around.

Lazy cow said...

Oh yes. And having a blog, as well as NEVER SHUTTING UP just makes me hate myself double the amount. I have asked close friends if they're sick of the sound of my voice (because I sure as hell am) and they just laugh and say "no". That's why they're my friends. (And that is why they don't know I have a blog - it would just be way too much for them).

Carrie said...

Take a break lady, or limit your posts to reviews for awhile, then get back into the ETC.-swing.

ps- good job with explaining a feeling I get so often, and the useless "cure."

Her Ladyship said...

Oh, I totally know how you feel. For me, this is a product of overthinking. A little introspection is always a good thing, but not to the point where you reach paralysis. So maybe give yourself a defined break so that you can see if it's the blog that's gotten you down and at the end, you can see if you'd like to continue (and I fervently hope you do, I always really enjoy your posts and use it for book lists).

Margolicious said...

Hi. Long-time listener, first-time caller. Big fan. I'm a therapist, and I completely identify with your blog today. I find myself all talked out at the end of most days and terrified by how similar I am to my female-adolescent-beginning-to-show-signs-of-a-personality-disorder clients. I recognize some of their behavioral/emotional patterns in my own and am harrowed at the thought of anyone finding out how flawed I am. So I spend my drive home from work pointing out all the ways that I am completely emotionally healthy and somehow manage to maintain satisfying relationships. Mostly, I think I just need to shut the hell up. But that tactic bodes ill for someone whose profession is talking. As usual, the answer is the ever-popular "two words - therapy" all-star: BOUNDARIES. Reign 'em in for a bit and then get back to the lovely verbal whoring we all love s'darn much.

Doppelganger said...

Awww... you guys are all so nice. I have to admit to feeling slightly embarrassed about yesterday's complain-y post, but I keep reminding myself that if you can't whine on your own site, what the hell has blogging come to?

Strangely, I feel much better just having expressed the weight I feel in my brain and my fingers. And it's reassuring to hear that summertime blog burnout is a widely felt internet phenomenon. I tried to remember if I felt this way last summer, but realized that Sam was only three months old at this time last year, which means that technically I was still in the throes of normal post-partum insanity.

And Carrie, thanks especially for the reminder that I CAN, in fact, take a break from writing if I so choose. I have this tendency (and I'm sure I'm not alone) to get locked into thinking that I HAVE to do things a certain way and according to a certain timeline, and then I have to remind myself that the only person putting pressure on me is me. Just reminding myself of this has been liberating, and may have been just the boost I need to get my engine revved up again (so much so that perhaps I may even avoid unfortunate mechanical analogies in the future).

Thanks so much, everyone. You guys are the reason why I write here and not in a little spiral-bound notebook.

Doppelganger said...

Heheh. Margolicious, your comment must've been posted while I was writing my own comment, but I wanted to add that it totally cracked me up. I can't even imagine how draining your job must be. It'd probably kill me.

"Verbal whoring." Hee! I'm trying to figure out how to incorporate "verbal whore" into my site somehow.

Alice said...

I've been feeling the same way lately.

I started writing an entry yesterday about my saga of finding the ingredients to make a polenta and swiss chard thingy (seriously, so hard!), and got tired and bored of myself halfway through, and ended up ditching the entry.

I think Tamara's right - it must be a summer thing.

Anna said...

I don't know if it's a summer thing... it happens to me all year round. But then, I do tend to be a tad nihilistic about everything. (If nihilistic is the word; I'm quite brain-tired!)

It goes:

Anna starts writing a blog -> Anna gets distracted a few sentences in -> Anna returns to entry but now feels that everything is completely innane -> Anna starts questioning the meaning of what she's writing -> and why she's even writing -> And isn't that really self-centered -> Not really, and there's nothing wrong with being self-centered anyway -> Or is there? -> What is the meaning of life? -> There are soooo many disparate meanings life has no meaning and therefore writing a blog entry is POINTLESS

And then I shout WHY DO YOU ALWAYS HAVE TO RUIN MY LIIIIIIIFE and run up to my room.

Which isn't to say that it's what you're experiencing (hey, I usually have months between entries and then I only like about half of them. And one of my proudest moments recently was finishing a short story. Which was actually SHORT, not one of these ten thousand word jobs. A couple of sides of A4, maximum.

I think maybe it's because I talk about myself all the time on other people's comments so I get burnt out by the time I come to write myself? Heh.

A. Estella Sassypants said...

Yep. I felt that way two nights ago when I'd had a crappy day and hadn't actually blogged in several days. However, I simply could not face my own words on a page. Couldn't. Stand. My. Own. Words. So I understand ya. Give it a few days, and you'll be like new.

White Trasherati said...

DG - I miss you something awful when you don't blog. That said, don't do it just on my account : )

Seriously, I rely on "my" bloggers daily. Though I post or comment rarely, I'm all up in your blogs daily. So thanks for that. It's weird for me to grasp that you'd get burned out, because I think of you (and my other favorite bloggers) as writers, so I selfishly never consider that you might rather...not.

Great, now I have guilt.

Jessica said...

I'm adding my voice to the chorus (a little late maybe): yes. I sometimes get sick of the sound of my own voice and the shape of the words I type. Sometimes I just go missing from the blogosphere for a while, and then I get a chance to miss it & come back.

That said, we your faithful readers look forward to your posts and whatever they have to say. No pressure, just reassurance. Keep up the good work!