ᕕ( ᐛ )ᕗ Herman's blog

On writing regularly

It has been a while (perhaps too long) since I’ve written publicly. My notepad is, however, filled with half jotted down ideas, semi-written essays, and the scratchings and sketches of a madman re-learning algebra and Spanish.

I once knew a man who lived by the somewhat questionable principle that if you don’t use your teeth, you don’t need to brush them. To the great misfortune of his dental health and the mild horror of his acquaintances, he demonstrated a certain level of commitment to this philosophy.

Similarly, some people believe that the art of writing is a skill that can be summoned on a whim, like a genie emerging from a lamp with a flourish of creative brilliance. In my experience, however, writing is more akin to the labour of a blacksmith, hamming words into shape through the heat and sweat of regular practise.

I recall a particular day long ago when the world was just a tad bit less rational, and perhaps a touch more interesting. I was hunched over a table in a coffee shop filled with musty books and the delicate scent of forgotten magic, laboriously crafting a story about the wisdom of a fisherman. The storm was well underway and his perception was such that this was seen as a blessing by the gods in order for him to test his resolve. In those days, I was still learning that the habit of writing regularly was akin to sharpening a blade, honing the edges of my imagination and summoning my ability to wield words with the finesse of a fencer.

Over the years, I've come to understand that consistency in writing is not only essential for improving my craft, but also for cultivating the strange and capricious creature known as inspiration. Some days, it lies dormant like a slumbering dragon, while other times, it seizes me by the scruff of my neck and drags me into an adventure I never knew I needed. In either case, I've discovered that the act of writing regularly has been like leaving a trail of breadcrumbs for inspiration to find me.


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