The Winter Blahs

I've been having a hard time finding motivation lately. It isn't that the current work-in-progress is stalled, because I'm happy with my outline so far, and I've been able to put some good pages together. I know what's coming up next and I'm prepared. It's just...I kinda don't want to?

What I want to do is climb back into bed and read. I've just picked up all of my requests at the library, so I have ten new books, and I downloaded some new fanfic from writers I like. I've also got a holiday hangover, so the idea of sitting down and working seems way too complicated for my brain, which is still convinced that all I'm required to do is eat junk food and nap. I should eat something not made out of cardboard or sugar, now that I think about it.

Complicating matters is the fact that my old laptop died, so I got a new one. It's shiny and much, much faster, which is all great, but it also uses Windows 10, which is shit, in my humble opinion, so simple things are way more difficult than they need to be. Also, the space bar requires a lot more force than my old one did, so I'm constantly running words together and having to backspace. That seems like a tiny thing until you've done it for the hundredth time on one page, and it's killing my flow, man.

Plus, the weather outside is frightful. Some of these snowflakes are enormous. Yet another reason for a nap.

Obviously, none of these problems really qualify as problems--I have food and heat and stuff, so perspective and all that--but creativity and motivation can be fickle things, and unfortunately, my job means I need some.  

I know I'm not the only one to ever suffer from the winter blahs--if there's a person alive who always wants to work, I haven't met them--but at least I have a handy source of inspiration: Hollywood. Hollywood loves movies about writers, maybe because Tinsel Town is full of frustrated screenwriters who get very little credit for the end result. Hollywood is very good at taking a long, boring process and making it look dramatic and noble. So I think I'm going to waste a couple hours of my weekend watching a movie in the hopes of getting a metaphorical shove off the couch.

It occurs to me that the first half of this post has basically been one long excuse to talk about my favorite movie about writing, but it's too late now.

Stranger Than Fiction is amazing. It's about a brilliant writer (Emma Thompson) struggling with writer's block on her latest literary masterpiece. Running in tandem with this is Will Farrell's story about a tightly-wound IRS auditor who learns one day that he's actually a living embodiment of Thompson's words, a character in her forthcoming book. And she's about to kill him off.

The movie's kind of a dramedy, I guess--on the surface it's pretty funny, but the underlying questions about the worth of a life and the importance of art are posed with poignant sincerity. The cast is brilliant, too. From Thompson and Farrell to Maggie Gyllenhaal, Queen Latifah (anyone else in her role would’ve been completely forgettable) to the great Dustin Hoffman, everyone's bringing their A-game. But it's Thompson's character that most inspires me to write. She's got a reputation for greatness to uphold, half a book and a deadline. Can she help it that the perfect ending for the literary work of the decade involves a little murder? 

To Kill or Not to Kill. That is the question.

To Kill or Not to Kill. That is the question.

So I'm gonna snuggle in with a blanket and a cup of tea and watch a movie, and hopefully I'll get some work done later on the new book. And if anyone has any other suggestions for kicking the winter blahs to the curb, I'mallears.

Damn space bar.