Coming to Terms with the Empty Page

It happens more often than I like, this last time being the
worst in recent memory.

In the old days – you know, back in the 1990s – we called it
writer’s block. Today it’s “blog fade.” But whatever the terminology the effect
is the same: deep feelings of guilt, embarrassment, and failure.

For a writer pages are never blank. Pages are full of
expectation and excitement. They stare back at you with the longing of a stray
puppy looking for a home, begging to be embraced, fed and cared for. Blank
pages aren’t empty, but rather filled with words and ideas yet to be
discovered.

So how hard can it be to bring out what’s already there?
That’s easier said than typed. Ideas are at odds with the blank page, they
resent it. Ideas have their own sense of time and urgency. So the page waits as
the ideas move at their deliberate and often unnerving pace.

I could blame my work schedule for the lack of blog posts.
However, that would not only be an excuse, but pretty sad as I work for a
company that embraces new media. The boss isn’t keeping me down, my brain is.

I could blame the news, but again, that would be inane. If
you can’t think of anything to say after Rupert Murdoch buys the Wall Street
Journal, you’ve got a serious problem.

And I could blame my personal life, but that would be
difficult seeing as I don’t really have one. I admit my new plasma TV has been
a distraction, but the high definition service doesn’t get installed until
later this month, so again, this excuse falls as flat as my new screen.

All that’s left is to do this: write a post about how I
can’t write a post. They say to write what you know, and lately what I know is
I can’t muster the energy to write.

But I have decided one thing. I’ve decided not to blame
anything or anyone, including myself. Blame doesn’t get you anywhere but back
where you started. I’ll write when I can, when I have something to say, when
the blank page reveals itself and the ideas flow. There is too much going on in
the new world of journalism and media in general, and once in a while my voice
will rise and, hopefully, add to the common discourse.

Today is not that day. Tomorrow may not be, either. But you
will hear from me again – the blank page is calling.

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2 Responses to Coming to Terms with the Empty Page

  1. John Cass says:

    I am writing a blog article about time and blogging. Would you have some perspective on that issue in light of the post above?

  2. Hi John — sure, would love to help with your article. I’ll do my best to find the time 🙂 Just drop me an e-mail or call me, 323-202-1897.

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