I know, I know.
The blank page is frightening.
It could be anything. Anything. That’s frightening.
But then again, it could be anything.
I’ve never once sat down to write and not surprised myself with what I came up with. Not now. Not ever. Not even when I was just starting out.
Somehow, every time I sit down to write I end up discovering things I didn’t know existed. Cool turns of phrase. Interesting melodic shapes. Chord progressions I didn’t realize worked. There are always surprises.
Sure, there are plenty of bad surprises. Things I didn’t realize don’t work. In fact, there are probably more of those than good surprises. But to paraphrase Ernest Hemingway, it’s OK because that kind of surprise goes in the wastebasket.
But those good surprises go in the thing I’m making. Or I save them to go in some future thing I’ll be making.
They make the thing I’m making interesting. They make the thing I’m making fresh – first to me, and later to everyone else.
And the more I’m excited by the surprises I’ll discover once I start to write, the more fun writing becomes.
And the more fun writing becomes, the better I do it.
And the better I do it, the more I want to do it.
Go on, try it. Change your mind about writing.
You might surprise yourself.
Photo by Caleb Woods on Unsplash