Writing is my meditation. When I am distracted or annoyed or stressed or overstimulated or understimulated or uninspired or inspired or bored or tired or dead, writing will calm me up or down the appropriate amount. Sometimes I absolutely don't want to do it, and occasionally I have bouts of apathy and flat emotion that stop the writing for days at a time, but always I return with eagerness and excitement. When I started blogging 427 ago it was something I knew I needed to do, but never did; now it is, along with my soon-to-be wife, a major part of me that was missing and which I couldn't live without. There are other missing bits that life has yet to provide (children, writerly success, a kidney, a soul, a hook for a hand), but more about that in the hundreds and thousands of posts to follow.
Writing is the quiet I need and the adventure I crave but am afraid of; writing is the power of confidence that doesn't come naturally to me; writing is the one thing I feel I can do well; the only activity I enjoy and do well that doesn't poison my liver, fatten my arteries or make me sweaty (although it is giving me a worse posture and probably giving me DVT or varicose veins, and turning me into a weirdo); writing is the only thing that when I'm doing I don't feel I should be doing something else. When I dance or walk down the street I doubt myself so much I can barely move, I cannot sing due to a crippling fear of having people hear it, yet when I write these myriad self-doubts are slightly less of a problem, and that is a feeling so liberating I was a fool not to start twenty-five years ago.
Writing is the challenge that I need, and the hard work I have to do to get anywhere I want to be. It's a good feeling; I like it. It doesn't even matter if it's shit. When I'm blogging quality is not the point; habit and experiment is. When I'm writing fiction I just need to get it written down; and I can make it good later. Get the words on the page, and the prose can come later. It's also a really good way to remember things; for instance, if I mention here the saint I have just heard mention of on today's QI I will remember to look her up later. She was gifted Jesus' foreskin as a wedding ring, and actively sought out degrading experiences. It's the idea of actively seeking degradation: there might be a character or a story in that. And now I've written it here I'll remember it, and it'll stop going round and round in my head. Cleared head as meditation would do. Captain Beefheart biography and bed.