On a recent post I was asked the following question….
Q – Do you really experience loneliness when you write? A lot of writers say writing is lonely but I don’t understand how it is lonely.
My answer, which has been re-written a bit from the original response…
A – Yes. But, at least for me, that isn’t a negative.
I don’t really enjoy the company of others. Actually, more accurately, I am not comfortable in the presence of others. It can get to the point where I am stricken with intense anxiety and overwhelming dread. Unfortunately, like many, I am forced into situations of being among a group, at times to the point where if I refuse, my livelihood will be jeopardized. Because of the risk of potential financial repercussions, in my professional life, I have adopted an outward joviality — which is more a forced persona, while the solitary writer, perched over a keyboard, creatively conjuring characters, is the image which is more authentic and the persona with which I am most comfortable.
As far as how it can be lonely. Thankfully, how can it be anything but? Unless doing a direct collaboration, there is no one but the writer. Either setting up a distraction free environment, or using tools to block out the world, we design a space to deliberately limit interactions or conversations. It is a solo endeavor that is unto itself, the very definition of alone and, for my true self, a temporary Garden of Eden.