6.03.2010

around the writer's block





I have so many things to write about, yet no motivation or mental energy to write them.

I'm feeling overwhelmed by world events. I usually combat those feelings by writing. But right now the overwhelm is winning. More as soon as I can.

PS: I'd like to credit this cartoonist, but can't find the credit anywhere. Am still looking. It's a good time-waster.

21 comments:

redsock said...

Evil pencils are to blame.

L-girl said...

Imagine a world without writers.

Love that Savage Chick cartoon.

johngoldfine said...

I'm still laffin about that writing vs publishing mini-dustup on JOS the other night.

When I write: on the one hand, I can lose my self in the work, and that losing is the goal of so much human striving.... On the other, when things go well, as I lose one self, some new self does little victory dances, sentence by sentence, graf by graf--and so I'm finding that other, more puissant-than-usual me.

But 'happy' overstates the situation.

Publishing taps my worst nature: arrogance, self-satisfaction, vainglory, exhibitionism. Not that I ever mind evelling in that muck.

L-girl said...

Recognition for one's work is always good. A little ego now and again for the unknowns of the world is nice.

I know happy is really the wrong word. Fulfilled, useful, attaining a sense of achievement, of purpose, of worth, of identity.

Happy is a shorthand. I only mean to reject the idea that creating is a miserable business and people who create are inherently miserable.

Trying to get published, on the other hand, now THAT is a miserable business.

johngoldfine said...

Now that you're Canadian, you're so much more agreeable! Or at least I agree completely with your comment.

Amy said...

John, I just roared over your last comment that Laura is more agreeable now that she is a Canadian! Will she no longer scream at people who give up on games before they are over? Will she be nicer to the annoying trolls who invade her site? Will she listen politely to right wing nonsense?

Somehow, I think the true New Yorker under the New Canadian will still shine through. At least I HOPE so!!! :)

Amy said...

On the writing thing, I only really write to publish for job related matters. I find little that makes me happy in that process. I write because I have to, and I write about things that I have no passion for. Although I do enjoy the process of stringing the right words together to express my ideas, I cannot say anything about it makes me happy. Publishing the stuff only makes me happy because it gets the Dean off my back.

Now writing stuff for pleasure, whether it's an email, a comment on a blog, a birthday card, etc.---that I enjoy. But it is only for me and those to whom I am writing, and I have no thoughts about wider publication.

L-girl said...

Thank you Amy. :)

My Canadianness and my inner New Yorker are often at odds. Let's call it creative tension. It keeps me balanced.

Amy said...

Heh, maybe in that creative tension and balance lies the answer to your current writer's block. Or maybe it's just that you are drained and exhausted from a year of school, hard work, activism, etc. When do you get to travel again? That always seems to get the creative juices jumping.

James said...

I'm not positive, but the cartoonist looks like Mike Peters, who also does the daily strip "Mother Goose & Grimm".

L-girl said...

I was exhausted and drained, but I bounced back after a few weeks. This feels more like run-of-the-mill lack of motivation. It will pass.

Either that or I'll never write another word again. One or the other. :)

westcoastsox said...

Hi all. According to this website, this is a cartoon from the New Yorker by J.B. Handelsman: http://www.cartoonbank.com/1987/Dickens-First-Encounter-with-a-Martini/invt/116012

I'm sure he'd love the attribution, and a link to his website: http://jbhandelsman.com/

L-girl said...

Thank you, WCS! I searched Cartoonbank and didn't find it. I will link to it right away.

L-girl said...

...but it's not the same cartoon.

Amy said...

Well, now we have a copyright issue! :)

Amy said...

I bet the one Laura linked to is more recent. So did the second cartoonist copy the first, or did he come up with that independently? Interesting example for my copyright class!

redsock said...

Now we need to find the name of guy that stole it!

L-girl said...

The one I linked to certainly improved on the idea. "Olive Or Twist" by itself isn't that funny. But the idea of a bartender breaking Charlie Dickens' writer's block with that question is funny.

It's definitely possible that two people came up with these cartoons independently of each other. After all, Oliver Twist / Olive Or Twist is not that much of a stretch.

I recognize the cartoonist's work but can't place his name. I haven't yet looked up the person James suggested.

Amy said...

I agree that the second one is funnier. Of course, those who argue against copyright often make just that point---that creativity feeds on earlier works and improves them.

I have saved both cartoons to show my class next fall and to see what reactions I get about the likelihood of independent creation by the later cartoonist (assuming we know which one is later).

James said...

Olive or Twist is the title of a collection of New Yorker drinking cartoons by Jack Ziegler (the cover shows Oliver Twist at a bar holding up a Martini glass in the classic "Please, sir, may I have some more?" pose). J.B. Handelsman is another New Yorker cartoonist.

This cartoon, though is a re-draw of a Mother Goose & Grimm strip by Mike Peters. You can buy a copy on a mug at Cafe Press.

I expect Peters, Handelsman, Ziegler, and the guys who run the Olive Or Twist Martini Bar all came up with the joke independently.

westcoastsox said...

Well, I'm Exhibit A for likelihood of confusion (if this were a Lanham Act case). But let's not threadjack with IP wonk talk.