Merry Pen-o-pause – hitting a stalemate in creativity and life.

Mea Culpa. A lot is my own doing. The old excuse of the death of my brother is wearing thin at this stage (RIP 02/02/2016). And there is the pandemic that we have all found ourselves in. This did put a dampner on my creativity. Lots of artists and creatives have said as much of late. But that is not the whole reason.

Novemember 2019 was when I last blogged. Covid hadn’t hit yet. So using this new normal as an excuse to not being creative is just, well, an excuse.

What have I been doing? I am changed. Changing. I joke and will tell friends ‘it is an age and stage thing daarling’ but the reality is, it IS an age and stage thing. Covid isn’t helping but there is another factor.

I am perimenopausal. Say what? Yes, PERIMENOPAUSE (means “around menopause” and refers to the time during which your body makes the natural transition to menopause, marking the end of the reproductive years.)

copyright Yuckband

I hear you. And a lot of you will probably stop reading at this point and I don’t blame you. Even I am beginning to bore myself. Rest easy, there are millions of blogs and articles and books on this stage of life so I am not going to go into my body adjustments here now.

But I have concluded that it is part of the reason (not an excuse), the REASON, why I have found I am not being as creative as I have been in the past. It would seem that my changed ways from grieving, to coping with Covid have now moved onto a new path that is my body adjusting to less hormones and more of something else and this is affecting my creativity. Or at least my view of it.

I have found my creativity has taken a punch so-to-speak. Is that due to Covid or what internal havoc I am enduring – who really knows?

So I had to give myself a talking too. And be honest with myself and NOT listen to that petty voice in my head.

And then when I laid it out on paper, I realised that it was not as bad as I was making it out. Or at least, what I was telling myself.

It is not that I have NOT been productive or creative. Since I last put pen to paper here (was it really November 2019?) , I have attended two creating writing courses (Writing Crime with Cathyrn Ryan Howard and Editing with Curtis Brown Creative) and have written a new crime novel which I am currently editing for the commercial market. I have been working on my third book in my K-Girls teen series (books one and two having been optioned for a TV series) and have been developing another pen name/series for a whole different genre (that shall remain nameless till a future date ) and I have been experimenting with Zines and collaging.

And that is just my writing life.

I have also been a mother/wife and keeper of the house/pets. So I HAVE been busy.

But I am finding less of a drive for blogs, insta, twitter and other social media platforms. Facebook threads have become a bore (ok, except feelgood videos) and I am less patient/tolerant of the stupid and materialistic views that are shared thereon. (I prefer to spend 10 minutes watching a bumble bee flit from one flower head to another, its hind legs laden with yellow pollen baskets and fascinate at the physics of the whole thing.)

And then there is that part of me that has become middle-aged (I turn 50 in February) and using my free time to go ocean swimming and yoga and walking hills, taking vitamin supplements. And really enjoying all the benefits of doing that.

Oh dear.

So having given myself a good talking to, I realise I must keep going. Gotta keep on keeping on.

I am editing said crime novel. I have a killer tag line and thought my back of book blurb was brilliant until I recently saw another published book with something very similar and was gutted. But that is trivial really. The focus has to be on editing the novel and getting it as perfect as it can be before putting it out to agents. That road to getting published is still a very long and twisty one.

In the mean time, I am enjoying my new pace. Less is more maybe.

How has your creativity been? You sporting any changes as a result of Covid, or because of a particular stage in your life?

If you are, it might help to sit down and get yourself to list what you have been doing and you might find that you are pleasantly surprised and that you have been busy with life.

And there was no need for any guilt after all!

So what do you think?

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