October 17, 2003

Welcome to Writer's Noose

Hello all and welcome to my blog. Odd name for a blog, eh? I'll get to the reasons for it in a little bit. First things first. My thanks to Pixy Misa for giving me a spot here in Munuviana and to Jim for convincing me to start it and giving me the intro to Pixy Misa.

Now, on to the name of the blog. This requires a little bit of background but I'll keep it short for you.

Me: My name is Charles but I go by Chuck. Some of my old friends still use Charley 'cause that's what my folks saddled me with as a kid. I'm a journalist who's trying to be a writer. "Aren't those the same thing?" you ask. No, my friend. Journalism is regurgitation. Writing is creation. I'm a text puker for the "other" paper in Rochester, NY. The one without enough circulation, sales or advertisers to stay afloat much longer. The one that isn't owned my a multinational. I take stories off the AP wire, edit them, punditize them, and submit them. Original content is not encouraged. Once in a great while I'll get to write some sap about a regional club meeting or other such rubbish. I want to be a writer. I want to CREATE.

My problem (part 1): I can't write at home. There is always something that intrudes. Work. Women. Neighbors. Noise. I just can never seem to sit down long enough for the creative process to really start up. My muse keeps leaving messages but I don't have the time to call her back. I've got outlines, plot lines, storylines, anecdotes, characterizations, you name it. I've got all of the pieces and I just need a bit of Me time to glue them all together.

Solution to problem (part 1): I came up here to Lake Mazinaw in the glorious province of Ontario, Canada (the 51st state of the Union). I've been here before, as a kid. I came up on a two week vacation with my folks and the one thing that stuck about the experience (besides catching them en flagrante delicto) was how unbelievably peaceful the place is. Dad got me in touch with the folks we rented a cabin from back then and they got me in touch with the folks that they sold the cabin to. Badda boom, badda bing, I'm on sabbatical. Two months in an isolated cabin on the lake. No phones, no neighbors, no interruptions. No television but a satellite uplink for the laptop (the place is billed as a businessmanís retreat now). Well, thatís not exactly fair. There is satellite tv set up here but you have to bring your own tv and I didnít. After all, Iím here to write, not to entertain myself right?

My problem (part 2): I canít write. Not a fucking word. Since I got here I havenít written a single worthwhile sentence. I spent days going over my notes. I donít have any idea what I was thinking when I wrote them. Itís like some other person jotted all of that crap down and none of it fits together in any way I can see. My muse got pissed that I didnít return her calls and has gone looking for a more attentive partner. This is my one and only chance to get a book written. I am not wealthy. This two month sabbatical is draining every bit of my savings. I cashed in my retirement account. I am totally fucked. This is way worse than writer's block, it's writer's noose (therefore the blog name - clever, eh?)

Solution to problem (part 2): I wrote to Jim about the writer's block (we were in the same lit class in college) and he reminded me of what old Prof Shail told us. Shail said that there is no sure cure for writer's block but he had one method that usually helped him. "You can't write? Write anyway." He told us that when you can't write what you want, write what you can. Keep in the habit of writing and eventually you'll start to really write. So Jim convinced me that blogging was the way to go and here I am now.

Posted by Charles at October 17, 2003 12:04 PM

You messed up my link! :(

Posted by: Pixy Misa at October 22, 2003 12:03 PM

All fixed.

Posted by: Chuck at October 22, 2003 01:05 PM

Hey! Who are you? When did you get here? Dang, we didn't get a chance to bake a cake!

Whoops, forgot the Official Munuvian Welcome:


Posted by: Victor at October 22, 2003 01:20 PM

Short answer: Chuck. Last week.

Long answer: I'm a late 20's newspaper journalist trying to be a writer. Last week but I didn't really do anything here until yesterday.

Thanks for the welcome, Victor. ;-)

PS: What do you mean, no cake?! I was promised cake!

Posted by: Chuck at October 22, 2003 01:45 PM

I ate the cake.


It was very nice, though.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at October 23, 2003 06:44 AM
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