And I really did like my new sleep schedule. It gave me plenty of quiet time to ponder the questions that have been plaguing me. But, more importantly, it's been giving me time to write. I realise now that it doesn't really matter, on the Great and Powerful Intarweb, if your writing is completely refined and well written. Hell, I found out I don't even need a reason for writing. As long as you put something that is moderately readable into the little input field, you don't have a problem. Now, I may sound like I'm going to start on a rant, but I'm not. I'm honestly not really pissed about anything at all, right now. Sure, I might ne slightly tired, and hungry, and achey, but that doesn't matter. What matters is the discovery that I can write.
I've always, always had a problem with writing. Whenever I started writing something on whatever subject the teachers told me to, I sort of froze up. I couldn't think of anything to write. I just had this sort of stage fright thing goin' on with my assignments. It got to the point where I was terrified of any tests that involved writing more than one or two simple sentences, because I knew I would fail them. So, I did what I thought was the only remaining option. I refused to write. I mean, think about this from my perspective: If I wrote, I would fail. If I didn't write, I would fail, too, but I wouldn't have to go through the agony of having something I had written being given an F. I was a perfectionist like that. I reasoned that if it would get an F, it shouldn't be written in the first place.
I realise now, years after I stopped writing, that I was really missing out on something fun. It's like reading, I suppose. If you grow up enjoying it, and start reading before you get into school, you will be hooked on it for the rest of your life. If you have teachers and parents who are not really there, helping you at every step on that rickety staircase of literacy, you will fall down. And if your parents and teachers don't give you a hand getting back up, you sit there, not really liking the written word, but not hating it, either. But with writing, I find that I really wish I had started into it when I was younger.
I wish my teachers had let me write on whatever subject I chose, provided that it was x number of words/sentences/paragraphs/what have you. Well, to be completely fair, I do remember one assignment that did let me do that. I was in second grade, so the memory is around a decade old, so it is more of an impression with bits of trivia attached. I can't remember how long the assignment was, but it was pretty much a 'here's a pencil, here's some paper. Have fun.' kind of assignments. I ended up writing a dream I had had the previous night, and it wound up being around one page, front and back. That's a lot, for a seven year-old. Especially when working with simple wide-ruled paper instead of the big, inch-high-lines paper we had used for practising our letters.
And that was the first, and regrettably, one of the few, writing assignments I truly enjoyed doing. Every single assignment after that was on some subject that I didn't care about, because I was too wrapped up in whatever book my Dad had given me to read. My writing skills were stuck at second grade, for a while. When I was expelled from the elementary school I had been attending, and enrolled in a special education and treatment program at a school that took an hour-long bus ride to get to, I retreated even more into books. Fiction was my friend. My father had introduced me to Heinlein when I was still learning to read, and that's what I read on the bus.
It's also what I read at recess, instead of playing with the other kids. I read his stories at lunch, after wolfing down my food. I read his stories at home. And I'm pretty sure that's when I really stopped liking anything I had written. I hated my writing because it wasn't as good as Heinlein. I now realise that nothing I write will be as good as Heinlein in his prime, and that I should write anyway, but back then, I couldn't stand the thought of failing an assignment because of bad writing. I still can't, by the way, as evidenced by my flunking English 101 twice in a row, as well as flunking English 52 (basically a remedial English Class).
But that isn't writing for me. That sort of thing is dreary busywork created to waste my time, making it so I can't hand in a huge paper on something that struck my fancy, like a comparison of Origami and Kung Fu. Which I have written, by the way. I think it kicks elegantly folded ass. But that isn't my point. Well, I guess, maybe it is my point. Writing, for me, is when I am allowed free reign over the topic and style. Length still kinda kicks my ass, though, if I try to stick with one topic, but I'm working on that. Writing is something that gives me joy now, and I now wish I had seen it sooner.
Damn. I started writing this at 2300. I didn't think I could write that much in under an hour. Surprises me what I can do when I want to do it.
Oh. And here's some Star Wars things, for sitting through that incredibly long piece of writing there.
You were destined to have a Red Lightsaber.
Red is the color of fire and blood, so it is
associated with energy, war, danger, strength,
power, and determination as well as passion and
desire. You have seen the Strength and Power of
the Dark Side of the Force and have you thirst
for more of it.
What Colored Lightsaber Would You Have?
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I like Darth Tyranus. His lightsaber kicks ass.