The Taunting Blank Page
“White. A blank page or canvas. So many possibilities.”
Words bequeathed by American composer/lyricist Stephen Sondheim. Prose to re-assure the creative mind not to fear that chaste surface in front of them.
A proclamation that the untouched parchment is at your mercy. Affirmation that the blank folio has no control over the creator’s process when constructing their art.
Or as another artist proffered, “Fill thy bowl from the cornucopia of ideas at thine minds table.”….. Actually, that wasn’t advice advocated from an artist, I just made that pretentious poetic nonsense up.
I suppose you could say me proffering “Fill thy bowl from the cornucopia of ideas at thine minds table.” Was an example of yours truly filling my bowl from the cornucopia of ideas at my minds table…… I found that epiphany at the end of the buffet, to the right of the plate of pizza and just behind the sausage rolls.
Personally, I can relate to Sondheim’s words of encouragement for those daunted by a blank page. Every morning I sit at my laptop with no inkling of the subject of which I’ll write. However, I don’t panic as I take my seat, knowing at some point I’ll have an epiphany which will develop into a piece 500 words minimum.
That spark can take just minutes or hours, but I know inspiration will eventually rear its head. Even though it’ll be just the seed of an idea, more often than not I build on it.
An example of what I’m attempting to convey is, 20 minutes ago when I commenced this narrative I didn’t have a clue how I was going to populate this page of A4. However, I’ve now penned over 270 words following my original epiphany.
At this point of the monologue, I’ve no idea what I’m going to further add. I’m confident, though, something will manifest itself in my unpredictable psyche, thoughts that will enable me to pad this blog out a bit.
I’ve just padded this out by over 30 more words in the paragraph above, simply by telling you I’m confident I have the creative wherewithal to pad out the narrative……. Blimey, there’s nowt to this padding stuff out malarkey!
As I sit here in my usual writing chair at the dining table, I notice the carpet appears extremely worn underfoot. Perhaps writing in cricket boots with metal studs wasn’t such a good idea after all!
Wearing this unlikely footwear indoors is a superstition on my part. I started wearing them a year back, following a carpet salesman friend advised a soothsayer (who incidentally didn’t say sooth once!) advocated wearing studded sports footwear indoors brought good luck.
After months of adhering to this advice, I think I’m going to stop the practise. After all, It hasn’t brought me a great deal of luck in the last year. During those 12 months I’ve had a great deal of misfortune, including having to spend £2500 on replacing carpets and broken floor tiles.
An hour ago this page was as white as a ghost. It wasn’t haunting, moreover taunting, spitefully attempting to impart self-doubt about my ability to populate this folio.
In the previous paragraph I passed todays goal of penning 500 words; the faith in myself to acquire ideas prevailing over the tormenting blankness which initially greeted me.
Right, I need to get off and do some proper jobs…….. Incidentally, does anyone want to buy a pair of size 9 cricket boots?