It’s something that’s been on my mind quite a lot lately. The initial answer is obvious, I know:
When you stop writing.
In that case I might just as well write “loser” across my forehead and have done with it.
I’m not writing at the moment. I don’t even feel like I could. I just don’t have the energy. Or the inclination. I’m phoning it in.
I wonder if your passion can be like a job. A job that you sometimes adore but other times just need a break from, because you just don’t feel it. You know what I mean, you love your job but sometimes the little tasks surrounding it drive you crazy. Maybe there are lots of invoices to be paid, maybe there’s a month filled with dreary meetings you just can’t avoid, maybe the coffee has gone bad. Whatever it is, the spark has gone.
You hope it’s coming back, but in the meantime it’s frustrating as hell.
Then you start to think that it’s not your true passion, because if it were you wouldn’t feel this way. Maybe this writing thing is just something you’ve convinced yourself you should keep doing because it was what you always thought you wanted. Like the relationship you cling to because you spent so many years on it, even though in your heart you know its dead. Maybe you should retrain, seek another path.
So it’s exactly like a job. But instead of invoices and bad coffee, it’s everything around the writing that’s driving me nuts. Social media. Trying to create a platform when my heart just isn’t in it. So instead of writing I find myself looking for something to post on Instagram, something pithy to share on Twitter which no one will read, or something to say here. I’m exhausted.
Whew. I needed that rant.
I still feel like a failure, but at least now I know why.
I’ll just sit and watch Maigret instead.