Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

Have You Seen My Writing Mojo?

Where did my Mojo Go?

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Have you seen it? I’ve been looking all over for it.

For whatever reason, I seem have lost all my motivation to write. I put it down before the holidays because I was so busy with other things and now I can’t remember where I left it.

It was a modest little Mojo–more the warm, cozy, satisfying kind than one of those bright, jangly ones that you have to mind all the time. It didn’t squeal, “Look at me” every time I tried to turn my attention to something else. It just snuggled up and made me feel good inside when I played with it.

So far as I know, there aren’t any lost-and-found shelters for forlorn Writing Mojos. I suppose it’s possible that it went looking for some other writer to feed it and love it and spend time with it. Maybe the 2-year old next door has suddenly blossomed into a prolific scribbler to the delight and wonder of her parents. That would be lovely for her, and all, but I confess that I want it back.

I blame myself. I neglected the poor thing. I admit it. I let circumstances get in the way of my daily writing. My knitting blog broke (I have yet to figure out how to fix it), so my first outlet of writing suddenly wasn’t available. My freelance assignments dried up so I felt funny posting here, because it felt somehow hypocritical to write about writing when I wasn’t actually writing. My day job, which already blocks all sorts of file-sharing websites, suddenly made it impossible for me to plug in a thumb-drive so I couldn’t carry my novel back and forth to work on in spare moments. (Because oddly enough, spare moments at my day job have always been some of my most productive fiction-writing time.)

So this is all my own fault.

I let myself be gagged. I allowed my favorite writing outlets to be shut down or made difficult to access because I didn’t fight hard enough to keep them or to find alternatives. I thought about restarting a regular journal, like I kept years ago, but there are some serious penmanship deficiencies to deal with there, and trying to write with a pen sounds even more difficult than it used to.

The less that I wrote in the outlets still available, the less I FELT like writing.

It’s true what they say. You really do have to WRITE. It’s like any other muscle–if you don’t use it, you lose it. I’ve been struggling to get mine back. I think about writing all the time. I think about freelancing jobs I could be chasing. I think about my unpublished novel and think about sending it out again to agents (or about trying the self-publishing route). I think a lot about my poor, broken personal blog that I truly miss but have no idea how to fix.

But when it comes down to it, thinking is not the same as writing. In fact, it’s often the antithesis of writing because, the more you over-think things, the more you block the route between your head and a piece of paper.

Which brings me to the sad realization that the only way I’m going to get my writing mojo back is to COAX it back. I need to make it feel welcome. I need to make it feel safe and loved–and the only way to do that is to let it know that I’ll use it.

The only way to get it back is to act like I’ve already got it.

But, really, if one of you has seen it and can point it home, I’d appreciate it.

6 Comments on “Have You Seen My Writing Mojo?”


  1. Re: writing at work… Google Docs is your friend. Upload the book and then you can work on it at home or at work. I used to write while on the clock all the time back when I had a normal day job.

  2. --Deb

    And surprisingly, they haven’t blocked Google Docs … yet! But I notice that it’s very, very, VERY slow at work. On the occasions I’ve used it, I’ve ended up copy/pasting the entire document into Word to use at my desk and copying it back into Google Docs when I’m done. It takes ages for it to catch up to my typing.


  3. Sometimes I keep things I am writing as drafts in my mailbox. That can work if your email isn’t blocked. Just be sure to set the receiver to yourself, so it doesn’t matter if you sent it out by accident.

    Your knitting blog broke? Didn’t you just post something today?

  4. --Deb

    Laughing–that’s how I wrote this post. In my email account.

    And, my site for knitting book reviews is fine. It’s the personal knitting blog that’s broken.


  5. Wow, two knitting blogs?


  6. I liked the point you made about how thinking is not the same as writing. Writing has much more closure – it’s like your mind goes, okay, now I can stop fixating on this! When I get stuck, I find that mind maps help, because they’re not as linear.