Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Restless and mojo-less

I've been trying to write all day, and somehow I got off on the wrong foot for it.  I think I've written perhaps a page and a half total today, which I suppose is better than nothing, but it doesn't feel like much result for all the effort – if effort truly is the word for it – that I put in today.  I'm feeling grouchy because I noticed a few days ago that an edited volume that came out within the last two years touches upon some issues that I hoped I would be the very special little snowflake first scholar to raise.  This is particularly galling, since I haven't yet had a chance to read the book, and the writing I've been banging my head against of late is twofold: the book manuscript, and the book prospectus.  I can't very well submit a prospectus, with its obligation to explain how the book will fit into the existing literature on a subject, without knowing about the existing literature on the subject.  Unless I want to look like a damn fool, anyway.

Coming back to Research City, with all its strangeness and upended status quo, has clearly thrown me off my usual habits.  A few days ago, when I had a burst of productivity and put down four pages in a single day, I didn't worry about that.  But now that I have noticed the days of desert-like quiet upon my keyboard that tend to come before and after such an anomaly, it's bugging me.  I think I need to re-establish the writing routine that saw me through my dissertation, and which I only haphazardly tried to recreate in more recent times.  I need to wake up, get the coffee brewing, and sit down without logging on to the motherfucking internet and write for an hour or two, before I become fully aware of everything in the world that makes me feel small, helpless and defeated.  (I've almost reached the point at which merely turning on the news for a few minutes has that effect on me, so it might be good for my mental health as well as my career to turn away from all that early in the day.) 

Maybe, instead of trying to squeeze out another paragraph or two tonight, I should just pour myself a drink, relax for a bit, and then turn in early, so I can start recovering my mojo tomorrow morning.


  1. Yeah, I should take a news break for a few days ---- between the budget and Wisconsin and the devastation in Japan and who knows what is going on elsewhere globally, I get so beaten-down feeling when I'm at my computer.

    Mojo is a tricky thing. Sometimes going straight for the pen and paper and not even turning on the computer helps; other times not.

    At least you have writing you should be doing; I'm procrastinating from grading, which isn't as satisfying (and there's writing to do once that is done, as well. Sigh.)

  2. Ah, the mojo. Fickle damn thing. Here's to your coaxing it back, as you surely will, but the patience part is hard.

  3. Ahhh...the mojo. Yes, I know about this too. Here's to you coaxing it into action. Perhaps do something radically different for a short period of time whilst taking a break from the 'net.