Computer’s block


We’ve talked about my process for writing the first book before (you can find references in a variety of posts and even in the FAQ).  It’s time to start working on writing book 2, so I thought a little more exposition on my unique affliction was in order.

For whatever reason, the desktop computer has now become a roadblock for me, creatively.  Perhaps that’s an offshoot of using a computer for so much of my corporate life for the past 20 years that my mind associates it with routine, mind-numbing activities.

The block is so all-encompassing now that even these daily blogs have been a chore to complete.  Most often, I stare blankly at the screen or don’t even bring up the word processor, lacking the inspiration or motivation to compose something.  In fact, almost all of these blogs are “written” elsewhere…lying in bed, in the shower, shaving, sitting at a red light, reading…basically everywhere except in front of the desktop.

That doesn’t trouble me tremendously, since it’s not a creative block, per se.  I guess it’s a location block.  Once the idea has been “scripted” in my head, I have no problem expanding it into the form you see here.  I just don’t seem to be able to create from scratch on the computer anymore.

I use “anymore” because I used to have no problem sitting in front of the computer and banging out dozens of pages of “stuff”.  I’ve tried to identify when this particular affliction started and the closest I can tie it down is somewhere during the time I was working for my last company.  That’s probably as good a confirmation as any that it was time for me to leave.

The solution I ended up with for writing the first book, taking the lap top out to the beach to write a couple a chapters a day and then clean it up on the patio in the afternoon, avoided the great square monster on my desk completely.  The only interaction with the desktop is in backing up the files.

Fortunately, I have no reservations using the computer for research, communication, entertainment and games, although I do notice another creative pursuit I no longer do on the computer:  art (I still work in the sketchbook, though).

I’d like to think that, similar to other illnesses, this is one I will recover from someday.  I wonder just how long it takes to recover from 25 years of corporate over-exposure?

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