She’s trying to write about how the dogs are barking outside her window in a frenzied, chaotic way, and how the evening sun is casting long shadows on the walls. She’s trying to snap her thoughts into line, like cracking a whip, but instead it feels like the break in billiards: her thoughts are the shiny balls racing around the table and disappearing inexplicably into the hidden traps below. She’s trying to be unfiltered yet coherent, and sound mature but not obvious. She’s trying to let herself be an amature, which is hard when the intoxicating words of misguided praise have always echoed in her ears. She’s trying to fill up the blank page with an artist’s torment, trying to channel that bitter darkness inside her that she knows is there but is afraid to touch. She’s trying to think about how every great work she’s longing to emulate only passed under her eyes after months (maybe years) of revision, while at the same time hating the way that such thoughts feel like a crutch or an excuse to settle for mediocrity. She’s trying to protect her heart by controlling her ambition, but it’s hard when ambition has taken motivation captive. She’s trying to do a lot of things, but mostly she’s trying to write for the right reasons, which don’t really exist but she doesn’t know if she’s ready to admit that to herself just yet.
February 7, 2018