You may know by now that I spent the summer in New York City.
Based on this post, it seemed unlikely that I would have a desire to spend a prolonged amount of time in New York City. But it was one of those things where I said, “I’m going to do something I may never have another opportunity to do. Also, authentic pizza.”
So on a whim that was very out of character for someone who only applied to one single liberal arts school for college, I decided to apply for a creative writing program at Columbia University. Much to the shock of those who know me I was accepted, and several weeks later I found myself in the city that never sleeps. (This is one hundred percent true. To prove this point, there was a 24-hour cookie place right down the street from me that delivered until 3 AM.)
I went to New York with the intention of finding an adventure, which I did. I went to learn how to write better, which I did. And I went hoping I would return awash in purpose when it came to writing, ready to sit myself down and pound out that self-depracating memoir the world is probably clamoring to read.
This did not happen.
In fact, while I was there and while I now sit once more in my apartment in Spokane, sans Carrie Bradshaw dreams, I have never felt less inspired.
This is why I haven’t written in a while. I have no idea what I want to say. I have no tidy anecdotes to relate, no new profound thoughts about dating or life or God, nothing I feel compelled to write out other than this, and even still I’m thinking, “I hope I even make it to the end of this post.”
I have no idea why this happened. All the things were in place: an amazing university, a class to spur me towards greatness, a city that basically eats writers alive but none the less is supposed to feed their word-oriented souls with its energy.
But instead I feel dry and uncreative. I feel I have nothing to share because I have no tidy ending. I don’t have some great problem I can relate and then say, “But don’t worry, this is why it will be all right.”
I will say this though: I’m finding more courage to share pieces of myself even if I have no tidy answer at the end.
Even in conversations with close friends, I have always struggled to not relate difficult things about my life without inserting some peppy silver lining at the end.
I don’t want to be a downer, I don’t want to burden people, I don’t want people to think I don’t have any perspective or understanding of my situation.
I’ll tell people if I’m angry, confused or hurt, but I’ll try to end with, “Yes, all this sucks, but I’ve also discovered this good thing because of this bad thing, the sun will come out tomorrow, etc.”
This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but at times this tendency has left me feeling I cannot share my story if there’s no ending.
It’s made me feel my stories are only valuable if there’s a neat conclusion.
There is no neat conclusion to the fact that I feel completely uninspired and maybe even a little apathetic towards many areas of my life right now, writing being one of them.
That’s it. That’s all. I haven’t had any type of epiphany or surge of creativity. I feel uninspired, and that sucks. The end.
I wish more people would share their stories before they found an ending. I love that we seek endings and closure to not only ease our own sufferings but to provide hope to others. And while endings and solutions can provide these things, sometimes it’s just good to know someone else is going through the same thing you are and you’re both searching for the answer yet to be found.
So I’ll just end this post here, without a conclusion, without parting words of advice. I feel uninspired, I don’t know why, it hasn’t ended, but I’m going to share my story anyway.
Categories: Julia's Excellent Adventures