Where’s My Story?

As long as I can remember, I’ve never been at a loss for a story.

Before I learned to read, I would pluck books from the bookshelves in my house and make up an elaborate tale about the characters in the pictures. If the book didn’t have pictures, well, that just meant my imagination could run even wilder. And if there were no books to my liking on the shelf, I would grab a catalog from the mail stack and use that instead. Catalogs, full of pictures, were perfect fodder for my creative brain. I would name the models, give them personalities and motivations and adventures, and fall in love with their spirits. They were little pieces of me, and they got to do all the things I never could.

In high school, I took a “writing for college” class that was supposed to help us with our college essays. I didn’t have very many I needed to write, but during the semester I spent in that room I must have written at least thirty personal statements. For no reason. I was just happy to be telling a story, my story.

And somehow, after all those years of always finding something to write about, I am dry.

Posting every day is a challenge unlike any I’ve undertaken before. My days are mundane, filled with calculus problems and long treks to buildings across campus. I always have between three and five papers I should be writing for my religion class. And every time I sit down at my computer, ready to write something hilarious or moving that will cure the monotonous boredom of my life – crickets. Nothing. Empty.

It is times like these when I wonder if I can really be a writer at all. Writers can’t write without a story.

 

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16 comments

  1. Time to fill up the tank. All artists need inspiration, and too much output without enough input leaves us depleted. Let me know if you want suggestions! 🙂

      1. Activities you love are a good way to do this (my personal favorites are museums or botanic gardens), but if time is a factor going for a walk (without headphones) is the fastest way to regain creative energy. Also, this sounds lame, but gardening and baking also works for me. Something about mindless tasks sparks my brain.

      2. Oooh, I love museums and gardens. I went to a botanic garden a few weeks ago and it was incredible. I definitely need to chill a little bit.

  2. Whenever I have this problem, I sit and wait (usually on my bedroom floor with some loud song buzzing through my headphones.) maybe if you stop and breath and think of all the glory and magic around you, you never know… You might find something you never found before… ( food for thought.)

  3. It’s times like these that I write lists of things, usually things about myself. It’s an easy no-brainer, and every so often sparks creativity again. I’ve been writing a lot of lists lately.
    This post, however, was a beautiful way of saying, “I’ve got nothing.” I think that’s what I like so much about your blog — everything you say, you say beautifully.

  4. Wow, you’re taking a religion class at your college?! Is your professor against the Bible? Do you have to compromise your religious values?

    The interpretation of the Bible is always a difficult challenge. If you take it literally, you start your struggles immediately at chapter 1 of Genesis. If you treat everything you don’t accept as symbolic, then you are the Bible. So, why do you need the Bible? I have my personal understanding of the Bible for sure, because science is about facts and I can’t go against facts, not even with faith, for faith is about being certain of facts unseen and not about going against facts already seen (Heb 11:1).

    I don’t want to post a comment longer than this here, as it is not fair to your blog. However, if you do want to write something that many can relate to, then faith and science are your best friends. Too many Christians quit too soon, especially at college.

    However, calculus first. According to your age, you should be in your 3rd year already. I don’t know how you could have survived a math major or just about any major in science and engineering without strong calculus. I’m old. Maybe schools have changed.

  5. It’s so hard. Every now and then I get all this anxiety and wonder if maybe I told all of my stories. But then I see something funny or do something interesting and realize that there are still so many stories left to be told.

  6. I loved books because it gave me material to imagine a movie in my head. Now I think I understand what it means to have a writers mind..and I don’t think I have that as much..which is completely fine..hehe.
    Don’t worry about “going dry”…I usually say that the mind’s off on vacation some where and will be back soon 🙂
    As for the blogging every day…yes! I agree! It’s not for everyone..I know it’s not for me…my mind is still reeling with scheduling posts to fit the daily posting thingie!

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