The Footnotes

COMMUNICATIONS, JOURNALISM & WRITING

Even authors get writer’s block

Who doesn’t love hand-written letters?

Read a great blog post, a good literary novel; and then find something to write from that. Go to a café, spend the day cleaning, shopping or swimming; and then write something from that. Find inspiration.

Well I, on the other hand have no idea where to start or what to write. My experiences seem to lack and my writing, well, sometimes that isn’t so great either.

Am I the only one with this dilemma?

Fear no more!

It’s not everyone’s ‘cup of tea’ or solution but it works for me! Write a letter, to yourself. Daily, weekly, monthly or even yearly!

Every year is a defining year. For as long as I can remember, I’ve gone through numerous diaries and journals, pages and pages etched with writings, emotional entries and the occasional aggressive diary posts, all starting with the cliché ‘Dear Diary.’

The past two years, alone, I’ve started to write letters addressed to myself and stashed away for nobody but myself to see.

So why would you write letters to yourself?

To find more about yourself, writing it down and reflecting on it later.

It doesn’t have to have to be spontaneously written, write what you can and will read and understand later. There’s no use getting all ‘Shakespear-ian’ if you’re not going to understand what lingo you were on about, in the future.

Address yourself. Write about your day or what you plan on doing, no matter how utterly boring it could be or how extraordinary it is, write to yourself. Write a memory, a stream-of-conscious, anything and everything. Sign it off and let it be. Stash it away and read it in a few months or even years later.

Rereading my self-addressed letters a year later, are quite embarrassing and uncomfortable. But it’s a healthy discomfort because I’m confronting my own shortcomings and lack of self-awareness. I realised how much I’ve grown since the letter was written. With the end of the year drawing close, I’m still getting my act together but I’m a work in progress and that’s much better than no progress.

In time, people aren’t going to tell you where you’re going to go with your life, you have to figure it out for yourself.

Writing letters won’t tell you where you’re going to end up, but they sure do help you along the way. You will reflect on what you’ve written, grow from experience and discover who you are and where you want to go. One day, you’ll appreciate those letters from yourself.

And who doesn’t love hand-written letters?

 

Even authors get writer’s block
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