I have no title for this post because this post is about nothing
by Teresa Finney
[This picture of me as a baby has nothing to do with anything, but look at how fly I was at six months old.]
I am not writing again. What the fuck! Writing is the worst thing that has ever happened to me. Just last week I blabbed on and on about how much I needed to write because it was self-care and how much writing means to me and blah. I guess I wasn’t paying attention. Probably Breaking Bad or Cheers was on in the background when I wrote that. Sorry.
Actually, I have been writing. Every morning I get up, usually pee or throw some water down my throat and then walk-zombie like down the stairs in my Mother’s house, and write three longhand pages of whatever the hell I want. I can’t write the pages in bed because I’ll want to sleep instead of writing them. It is important that I remove myself from bed to write the morning pages. Usually those three pages look like this “I hate this shit. Why do I have to do this. Oh god oh god oh god. Ugh, two more pages of writing FML.” I call this writing the “morning pages” because um, I do them in the morning I guess and also because this book that I am reading The Artist’s Way calls them that too. I first read this book about three years ago when I was 25 and a bigger dummy than what I am now. (Can you imagine?)
You don’t really read this book, more like you work through it. It’s basically a “recovery” program for blocked creative people. How fucking Californian do I sound right now? Whatever. It’s broken down into twelve weeks and there are writing exercises and you take yourself out on play dates and shit. The play dates are important, the author says because, essentially our artists are children. So like you go out and do fun things like roller skating or dress shopping at a secondhand store or you go buy yourself some comic books if that’s a thing that you would enjoy. The whole purpose is to have f u n and the author warns that it should be expected that your killjoy side will want to wiggle its way out of having fun. Isn’t that weird? I thought that was weird, but she was right. I have not gone on these outings more often than I have gone.
Once I did go. It was about two years ago. I was living in downtown San Jose at that time and I borrowed my Grandparent’s car ( a beige van, a certified pimp mobile whatwhat) to drive to this arts and crafts festival the city was having. The festival was fun. I went alone because the book says going alone is mandatory. I remember eating Mexican corn on the cob on the steps of an old historical building. I wanted to buy a print of a framed picture of the Brooklyn Bridge but it was out of my budget. Instead I flirted with the guy who was selling them and told him that I’d just gotten into NYU. Anyway, if you find yourself blocked as a writer or want to do more creative things in your life, pick up The Artist’s Way, by Julia Cameron. (Big shout out to my generous friend Elissa Wald for gifting me the book after my previous copy went missing.)
I’ve found that one way to get myself to write is to read other writer’s work. This is an efficient tactic for me because of jealously. So often I read something and think “Oh my god why didn’t I think to write that SON OF A BITCH!” or “She (it is 9 times out of 10 a she – sorry, men) is so good at words. I want to be that good at words.” The jealousy or envy leads to me writing. Usually just to prove to myself that I still got it. (I still got it.)
This morning I read some Roxane Gay. She writes for one of the best sites in the world, The Rumpus (check out her posts here). She is an absolutely phenomenal writer. So smart and eloquent and funny. It’s important to me to be funny in my writing, so I am a big fan of her prose. I am probably going to spend all day today reading her stuff.
A few other notable (or not) stuff:
- I head back to New York really really soon (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!! !!!!!!! ! !!!!!!! ! !!)
- I am looking for a new apartment! I’d love to stay on the island since that’s where my life is (school is my only life), but I won’t have too big a problem with Queens or Brooklyn as long as I am close the subway. Close, meaning like 5 blocks or less. Let me know if you know of anything pls.
- I know I need to just let this go because it is a true bummer, and I’m only bringing this up because it’s funny to me. Last month I sent my application that I worked veryveryvery hard on to SPIN magazine for their fall Editorial internship program. I wrote music reviews! A lot of them! About two weeks ago, SPIN announced it was going to do layoffs and nix their November/December issues. SPIN pays their interns (applause), so this meant bye bye internship program. Additionally, the woman I sent my precious application to was among the editors to lose her job. This made me laugh so hard when I found out. Crazy, maniac laughter. I felt like Walter White in that scene. You know what scene I’m talking about! I laughed because really it is better for me to laugh like a manic than cry like one.
- There is an unopen 40 oz of Budweiser, still in the brown paper bag, in my Mother’s fridge which means I’m probably going to drink with my brother tonight. I’m still on summer vacation.
- There was absolutely no point to this post, but at least I’m writing.