And another thing...

Writing isn't meant to be "comfortable" or, heaven forbid, "fluent."  For goodness' sake, it isn't meant to be easy.  Writing is supposed to be soul-grindingly, spirit-churningly, mind-breakingly difficult.   If it were easy, just anybody could do it.  If it were easy, it wouldn't be work.

Writing is my job, after all.   It's what professors (and geniuses) do.  It is supposed to take hours and hours and hours of one's day (except if you're a genius; in which case, it just magically happens, like breathing).  It's not supposed to be something you can do in the odd 20-minutes here and there.  It's supposed to take concentration in large blocks of time.

My whole world falls apart if writing is easy.  See, being able to write fluently should be a secret talent, not something that can be learned, not something that can be taught, not something that can be accomplished in brief, daily sessions.  It is the only evidence that I have, as an academic, that my life is worth anything.  If it isn't heroic to be able to write, but simply a matter of little snippets of regular effort, then who am I to be proud of what I have accomplished in writing anything at all?  If it isn't mysterious, then what claim do I have to be smarter than anyone else?

Not that I think that I am truly smarter than anyone else; as one of my demons told me in college, "You're not brilliant, you just work hard."  See?  If writing is easy, I don't even have that.


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