Thoughts, Ideas and Inspiration by Melissa Earley

Category: writers’ block

How Do You Know When It’s Over?

Is it time to call it quits on “us?” We’ve been on again off again for almost two years. Even from the beginning we were more than just a fun little fling, more than a mere distraction. Even before I met you I knew you.  It seems that you’ve been a part of my life forever.

I thought we had real potential. I imagined what it would be like to reshape my life so that we could make a life together. I knew it was a risk. I knew not everyone would be supportive. I knew I would hear warnings and stories of others whose hearts you broke.

I’ve seen the warning signs. You’re intent on keeping your distance. I can’t always reach you when I want you. You have secrets you don’t share. We make plans and you don’t show up. I fool myself into believing I’ve accepted you as you are, that I’ve adapted to your inconsistency. Then you disappear for weeks at a time and I’m hurt all over again.

Monsters of insecurity lurk under my bed. They come out on sleepless nights and whisper what I fear is the ugly truth – that I’m just not good enough for you.

And yet, when we are together, really together, I come alive. That’s what brings me back to you, over and over again. With you I discover the world and myself.

Please, dear Novel, just tell me, do I keep writing or is it time to hit “delete?”



Nothing to Say

About a week ago a new blogging friend (with many more followers than I have) posted a link to my blog on her blog Something to Say (well worth the read) in order to encourage my writing. I am very grateful to her.  She gave me high praise by introducing me as someone who “has something to say.”

But then terror struck my heart and the “what if’s” piled on. What if I have nothing to say? What if I have already run out of things to say? What if what I have to say is nothing that anyone else cares about? I spin out of control. I am certain that I will be unmasked and found out.  A fraud. An imposter.

Various titles pop into my brain: Unasked Questions, Do Over, Preaching Naked. They crash into each like bumper cars. My mind buzzes. I have cicadas on the brain. I want to tease out a single strand but I can’t – it’s one big knot.

See, I’m layering metaphor on metaphor. Is there no hope for me?

I confess I have become an affirmation junkie and the blank screen threatens my next fix. I chase every thumb’s up and comment thread like my dog goes after squirrels. What if future posts aren’t as popular as earlier ones? Is that the real purpose of my writing – external validation? I cringe.

A truly spiritual person would write here about the importance of silence. When we have nothing to say, he would say, it is a good time to quiet the mind and listen. Yes, I nod to this sage. But silence is hard for me these days. I am certain that parents with houses full of crying toddlers or teenagers slamming the doors would love a moment of my silence. But for me, there is too much of it.

And then a clear note of feeling that has words attached gently rises above the noise. I worry that my writing will expose more of myself than I intend.

I stop spinning. Threads of thoughts begin to untangle.

Is that the real source of my writer’s block?

Dawn and the cicadas go quiet.

It’s not that I have nothing to say, but I am afraid of what I might say. Can I bear to be truly seen? To be known is both glorious and terrifying.

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