I seem to be facing a huge writer’s block nowadays. In the last two weeks, more posts have been not written than written. What i mean is that there have been several times when I have started writing something and then abandoned it midway. It’s way too frequent, and it’s bugging.
The pattern is similar each time – I get an idea for a post when I’m not in front of my comp. And get so much enthu for it that I actually figure out then and there how I’m going to express it – the overall structure, the words that I’ll use, the tone – all that . All this in my head. And then, I conveniently forget about it.
A few hours (or even days) later I remember this when I’m in front of the comp. Unfortunately what remains is just the central idea, and not the beautiful structure and words and tones that I had painstakingly created in my head. They are all gone, lost forever. Now, the fact that they existed a while back means that I try to remember them. And this clouds my normal thinking and I’m not able to write properly. I write a few paragraphs and then am literally lost for words. And the project is abandoned – usually for ever.
I wonder if this has anything to do with the language of blogging. I write in English – which is not my native tongue. I learnt English in school, though I had been taught some basics at home. I have never spoken to my relatives in any language other than Kannada. I must mention here that my English is totally different from my mother’s English, unlike say Kannada where we share a common slang.
The fact that it’s a failure of expression, and not of thoughts, leads me to believe that it might be due to the fact that I write in an “alien” language. And makes me wonder if I should diversify in terms of language. However, it’s easier said than done.
My “mother tongue” is Kannada and as I mentioned earlier, I don’t speak to relatives in any other language. Unfortunately I’ve hardly studied it formally. In my school it was taught between third and eight grades, and was intended at imparting a functional knowledge of the language (living in South Bangalore, you need it right?) rather than enabling formal communication in language.
Then, it has to do with Kannada as a language. The written language is extremely different from the spoken language. And at home, they don’t teach you to write essays. They teach you to read and write, and speak and talk. And you are taught the slang that prevails in your house – what your parents speak. And even if you get a Kannada newspaper at home (like I did till a year back), you don’t really learn the written language.
Coming back, I wonder if I should consciously learn “written kannada” and maybe write in that infrequently – when my English fails me. Of course a large number of you won’t be able to read those posts – but would a translation work? Write in Kannada and then translate to English – but then I might get stuck while translating. Wonder what i should do.
As an aside, today my mother decided that the Deccan Herald takes too long for her to read – so she’s not reading the paper nowadays. Tomorrow onwards, we are stopping the Deccan Herald, and getting the Vijaya Karnataka in its place.