I’ve been pretty quiet lately. I’d love to say it was from being super busy, which would be true, but that wouldn’t be the whole truth. I could throw in a medical consideration or two, but compared to some other folks, I’m pretty healthy.
No, fact of the matter is, I’ve been quiet because I’m in the middle of a meltdown of sorts. It seems to be common among writers, though I never noticed it until I began meeting more writers. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. I mean, look at what we do. We have voices in our heads having conversations with each other, and sometimes they include us as well. And if that still sounds like a nice stable, sane person, we make those people miserable for the sake of entertainment. Sure, sometimes there’s a lesson to be learned or a deep concept to explore. But most of the time we really come across as sociopathic schizophrenics.
My real struggle is with depression of sorts. It used to be a whole lot worse. Believe me, I was a walking train wreck at one time. It turns out I could name several prominent figures associated with literature who had “instabilities” of a similar nature. Kate Greenaway, one of history’s greatest children’s book writers and illustrators, struggled with dark times as well. Just look at her children. They may be playing Maypole and Hopscotch, but they’re miserable little tykes, reflections of her own struggles. Beatrix Potter was another fellow depressive. Edgar Allen Poe, and a host of my own contemporaries all seem to have us in company.
So am I comparing myself to Greenaway, Potter or Poe? Oh my, no. I bring them up I guess in wondering why most writers I know also want to sometimes hide safely behind our work and withdraw from the world. To be honest, I spend more time crying than I need to, and sometimes I just want to curl up in a corner and disappear. I don’t like Twitter, Facebook, or blogging. I’d rather just be invisible, and let my work talk for me.
Am I complaining? I don’t think so. I’m just letting you all know why I get quiet once in a while. I think those of you who are writers can understand. Those who aren’t, now you know. Oh, I’ll keep hanging in there. But sometimes a guy just has to take a breather.