I have set an alarm for 30 minutes. My goal is to write for the entire time. Free writing, keeping the flow going and not stopping, not editing, not trying to write something that is witty and clever and for keeps.
.....many random words on the page.....
I am failing at my 30 minutes, I am unable to sustain my attention for that long. I know however, that writing is a muscle, it is something I will build towards. At times in my life, improvising for 30 minutes seemed impossible. I have not figured out how to maintain my concentration while writing / typing. I do not have the endurance, the capacity to continue. I feel a need to edit, a need to put to page words that are meaningful, words that have the power to influence. Isn’t that why I write? Don’t I write because I have something I want to say, something I want heard, not because I receive pleasure in writing? Or do I write to figure it out, as a process, as a way of unpacking, a way of giving myself focus and direction? It is curious that I care so much about why I am doing this…...it is also curious that something about writing makes me uncomfortable and instead of facing or embracing this discomfort, I allow myself to be distracted, to lose focus, to wander not in my writing but in other activities. I think I need to learn how to wander while writing. Instead of stopping, quitting, what are strategies for continuing this process instead of embarking on a difference process? Can I make myself continue to type even when I don’t think I have something worth saying? Can I stay in the task, building stamina? Like moving, can I tell myself that it is ok to just show up, that whatever I write, that is the material? Why do I have a different standard for moving then writing? Why do I have a different set of values to apply towards this task? In moving, I accept that some days in the studio I will not make something worth keeping. Yet I have difficulty putting the same time and energy into my writing….
Five more minutes….
And I don’t know if I can follow through, I am not sure I can make myself finish this task. Put words to page, why is that so hard?
I find that posting online keeps me accountable, thus I am embarking on a daily writing challenge for myself. Whatever is written will be posted here; it will be raw, sometimes unfocused, and mostly unedited.
As I sit here with my feet planted on the floor, I find my mind wandering. I have tasked myself with the goal of writing daily, working towards publishing for the sake of publishing and not because I feel as though I have something worth sharing. Writing as a way of organizing my thoughts; writing as a way of figuring out. In my process oriented life I find writing as a means to an end impossible. It is why I hated writing papers for graduate school; it is why I am hesitate to return to school for a PhD. Writing to figure out, that I can get behind. Writing to learn, to unfold, to understand, to unpack an experience, an idea, a sensation.
It is the same in the studio. I can spend hours in the studio moving for the sake of connecting to my self. Yet there is a moment where what I am exploring becomes something. When a nugget of an idea takes form and from there the making is satisfying, the shaping, the narrowing, the repeating until it is just right, until a connection is made, until I enter a state of flow.
And I come back to this idea of flow and how it is so important to my dance making. Flow is like an inner compass that tells me that what I am doing is right; flow is when I can maintain my concentration, attention, and when I am living. I am not processing my living; I am not questioning my choices; I am not disembodied, analyzing what I am doing and why I am doing it.
I think that is why I am so miserable in my life right now. I am questioning my choices. I am wondering how I got here, why I am here, I am not confident, not sure of my footing and it is an uncertainty that takes me outside of my self. It is an uncertainty that makes me unhappy,
Being present for me is being in a state of flow where I feel as though my whole self is one. I am not distracted; I feel centered, calm, at peace no matter what is happening because I am fully present. I am not concerned with how slow time is passing; I am only concerned with the task at hand. I cannot worry; I can only be.
This is a blog of processes. Through the sharing of media and writing I am following my impulses, teasing out and unpacking, translating, solidifying, and making concrete my investigations into something that can be shared.