Writing is my greatest joy, and greatest frustration

I do wish I were more eloquent. Like one of those people who seem to have the most beautiful and profound things to say, all the time. - Dan Eden

I love writing. I love it more than most things in life. It's half self-expression and half introspection for me. Every article I write is a short journey. I start with an idea, which expands, turns from side to side, takes me down a path I haven't been before and at the end of it I have a piece that expresses a part of me but also taught me about..well, me.

The problem is that as much as I love the process, I never really like the end result. The problem with my path winding is that not only do I miss the goal, I end up on a whole other planet.

Imagine Frodo going to Mordor from the Shire and while his journey was perilous and lead him through Moria and other crazy places, he still got to where he needed to. That's my goal: to go from Shire to Mordor and enjoy the ride, learn things along the way. The problem is that instead of turning South at Rivendell, I turn North, end up going to the North Pole, looping around, finding Mongolia, and planting a flag in the middle of a British colony.

I restart often. I write entire articles, delete them and start over. To continue my analogy, I backtrack to the Brandywine river and somehow end up in the sea. When I realize this, I try to backtrack further back to the Shire (thinking, I might as well delete everything by now) and then I end up walking five times around the hill, exhausted, getting nowhere.

That's how I feel about this article already. Where was I going off to again?

Writing is a great pleasure. I love it. I write often, and I write on a variety of topics. From technology to self-improvement, to writing itself (and my novel). The most frustrating part of writing is that I never feel like my writing is what it should be.

To put it into perspective, it's like painting still life. You see what the end result should be but the brush never seems to create the picture you really want. So you keep trying and trying and trying until you can kind of tell that you've just painted a vase on your canvas. That's kind of what writing is for me. I see the overall picture, I know what I want to convey but I end up drawing smudges on a canvas instead of a deep, meaningful, inspiring piece. (On top of that, I blame my blog design and typography for the lack of positive responses but that's another story).

Time and time again, I get the same questions/critiques back:

  • what were you trying to prove again?
  • I don't see a point of this article at all!
  • I liked where you started but you lost me by the end
  • I get what you're trying to say, but can't you make it a little more engaging?

and then the worst: "You're just a failure" - which comes often, but in different words based on different points in the article.

I try, try, and try some more. Get critiques from people, try to act on them. I try to keep myself on topic, pre-plan some articles while free-writing others. Yet, I keep failing. I took a break but didn't get anywhere. I started writing more frequently, but that didn't get me anywhere either. I took more time to write better articles, still the same result.

But, I'll keep on going. I'll keep on trying as long as I can, to impress the "interwebz" and to be satisfied with my own style of self-expression.