Ed N. Secure

Lighthouse Reef, Belize by Brian Skerry via National Geographic’s Photo of the Day

Before anything else, I’d have to say thank you to Ruann for inspiring this post.

After reading his post, I felt convinced that there’s really no such thing as a writer’s block. People say such a thing occurs when they feel that they cannot write anything, but in fact, they just don’t feel that what their writing is good enough. From how I look at it, it’s more like a small editor inside my head that says, “We can’t publish that. It’s no good.” Let’s call him Ed N. Secure. I’ve had this conversation with him in my mind all too often to deny his existence, which leads me to say that writer’s block is just a fallacy.

Also, I realized that the best way to overcome what Ed is saying is to just write. Write without insecurity. Write without cohesion, structure, or form. Write without thinking of what others might say about how you write. Write whatever happened in your day. Write random words. Just write. Here’s an example from what Ruann wrote:

I’m used to people, sometime too much of them but now I can count them in my ashtray.

I found that part beautiful because  it’s a metaphor: the cigarette butts stand for the people whom he kept as company. Here’s another one:

Talking about credits, I told Abduremani and Amire (two of my sailors) that I mentioned them on the internet.  Failed. I didn’t know how to say ‘internet’ in body language so I gave up trying.

I can’t quite tell — in the usual linguistics-oriented way of naming some phenomena in language — what makes that statement funny, but it is, nevertheless, funny. Now, who says that isn’t good writing? With or without publishing it, that editor will soon shut up since we would have bullet-proof ideas to work with. With revision, free writing can become a magnum opus. Without it, it can be honest. Either way, writing is powerful. In this case, Ruann decided to publish his words; albeit borne out of writer’s block, it had the power to help me write this post. For that, I am grateful. So here’s the message:

Write. Then, write some more. When you run out of words, use an em dash. Then, continue writing.

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