As you might have guessed from the radio silence, December was pretty bad for me. A combination of seasonal depression, constant illness, and general gloom over the state of the world meant I had approximately zero energy for writing.
(This is not an apology, it’s just an explanation of what’s going on. cf. Telegraph your moves.)
This month things are looking up and I’m dragging myself out of the hole, but part of how I’m doing this is through daily writing over on my notebook blog. As a result chances are low that I’ll be writing anything here, but if you’d like to still read things by me you can check out my writing, current and past, over there.
The notebook blog is a place where I write things that are less fully formed, often more personal, and tend to be at the cutting edge of my understanding. It’s for things that are more useful to me to write than intended to be useful to others.
Ironically, as a result, it often resonates with people more. There’s a trade off between being broadly useful to people and really hitting home with the people it’s useful for, and the newsletter is more in the direction of things that are intended to be broadly useful, while the notebook tends to be things that are useful if and only if you already get the thing I’m pointing at.
Lucy puts this very well over on her notebook as the notebook being more indexical. A notebook post points at a particular thing, and if you’re not already familiar with that thing then it’s less relevant. Fortunately I seem to have very relatable problems so my writing there lands with a lot of people.
This month most of my writing seems to be grabbing onto a feeling and seeing what happens when I write about this. I started the month writing about the process with Writing from the heart in which I borrow Red Smith’s description of the writing process as “You simply sit down at the typewriter, open your veins, and bleed”. So that’s most of what I’ve been doing this month, and as a result the writing has been pretty dark. I promise I’m OK though (or at least no less OK than I usually am).
The most useful one so far seems to be Drifting away the time, because I put a label on a common experience.
Anyway, they’re all short, so there’s no real need for me to summarise them. Check them out if you’d like to, but if not, I’ll probably see you back here some time in February.
A similar time travel method to your thoughts in this post https://notebook.drmaciver.com/posts/2022-01-13-04:16.html are explored in the book Recursion by Blake Crouch, maybe you’d enjoy reading about what all breaks. Enjoying your short form posts, thanks for sharing.