On Not Writing Beautiful Sentences

I always wanted to be a writer. I studied English Literature at university and thought that would always be the path my creativity would take. I adore getting lost in books. I have been struck so hard in the chest by the power of a sentence that has summed up a feeling about something I sometimes didn’t even know I felt until I read it. Words are powerful and I have never felt comfortable using them. Maybe I’ve just been trying to hard. 

My last attempts were a futile stringing together of words into poems that I read at poetry nights when I was living in Paris in my early twenties. Reading them felt like being caught naked in my worst most saggy underpants, exposed on the page in the most unflattering light as my inability to write a thought provoking or beautiful sentence led to a jumble of clichés and unexpressed ideas. But recently I have felt that urge to write again. My creativity has been satisfied by drawing but the desire to write has been lingering around those moments when I can’t fall asleep because my head is so full of ideas that it feels it might burst.

I’ve just started re-reading The Artists Way by Julia Cameron, and for anyone else who has read it you’ll know about the Morning Pages. Mine rarely happen in the morning but every day for 12 weeks you write 3 pages stream of consciousness style to unblock your creativity. I’m only 3 days in but writing has been like taking the over flowing recycling basket that’s always spilling out of the cupboard and separating it into it’s glass, paper and plastic bins outside. Possibly not the most lovely of metaphors but I’m trying to let go, this isn’t supposed to be beautiful sentences. Writing has allowed me to sort out the mess that’s in my brain, put things into their right categories or throw things out, leaving an empty more peaceful space and a cupboard that isn’t overflowing every time I open it.

What’s come up for me is that I want to write out my ideas. They’re not ground breaking ideas, they’re not ideas that I think are the only right ideas. They’re just something that I want to turn into coherent sentences, like taking a wild sea and turning it into a calm reflection. I want clarity and to share ideas that start conversations. I don’t want to be a blogger or a writer. In fact, these labels have stopped me from writing and putting ideas online for fear of imposter syndrome. I’m not trying to be something I am not. I would just like some writing that could be an accompaniment to my drawings, what fuels them and inspires them, or even just write about making them. 

I think the best thing you can do with an idea is share it. I’m not going to have a consistent schedule for these writings, they will come as and when, and they’ll be put on the page as they come out of my head much like this is. I find myself blocked by rules and schedules so I’m doing my best not to make them. There won’t be a coherent set of topics. I want to write about sustainability, creativity, tea, self-care, money, reading, having enough, having less, the art of drawing, walking, paper and who knows what other crazy ideas might pop up in that twilight moment between wakefulness and being asleep. Nothing more than ideas shared on a page, an emptier space in my head, a spring board for conversations.