Fall in New Orleans.
88 degrees. 89 degrees today.
Nice crisp fall weather. Perfect for Halloween. Or not. It’s also very dry. Dry enough that some of the neighbors were watering their plants. We never water anything around here. We have rain. We have high humidity.
By now, the weather does feel like fall. Warmer than many places. But not near 90 degrees.
The only thing that looks and feels normal is the light. The light is starting to change angles. Even at high noon, it looks a little different. But, it doesn’t feel right.
I’m not motivated to look very hard for pictures. So I just took a walk around my neighborhood. Lots of tourists out and about. I know this because they were mostly part of a large tour group. Or, groups. They all flock to Anne Rice’s old house. No vampires there. Mostly, the house is used for events. Weddings. Big parties. Stuff like that. She lives near San Diego.
First, I want to discuss something I read. It was a co-post by a fellow blogger and another one who I’ve never read. Sorry. I didn’t know the blog existed. With 120 million WordPress blogs alone, it’s hard to find stuff. Most of the time.
I learned a couple of things.
He said something about writers’ blocks. He said there aren’t any. That’s not quite true. Maybe, not in the WordPress world because there are so many bloggers who post as a side project. They don’t write for a living. They don’t photograph for a living.
When you do those things for a living, you are bound to hit a dry spell. Yeah, sure you can write or photograph on assignment. But, sometimes you can’t reach inside and do those things to express yourself. As an example, Bob Dylan had two dry spells like that. Imagine the guy who wrote songs like, “Blowin’ in the Wind,” not being able to write. One slump lasted for seven years. He could write a song for a film or for something commercial, but not for himself.
The only thing to do is to keep going. But, you don’t have to share it with the world. Especially if it isn’t up to higher standards. Your higher standards.
There’s more to this.
I try to follow a routine. All the time. That helps. I learned that from Stephen King. No. I don’t know him. But, I read his excellent book, “On Writing” A Memoir of a Craft.” It’s short. Sweet. And, very informative. It applies to how I work too. After all, I don’t write for a living. But, I do create for a living.
I’m in one of those places now. It’ll come to an end. Eventually.
For me, like most people who hit a dry spell, it’s mostly external issues that are getting in the way. Making a picture is a sort of meditation. No matter my working technique, once I settle in to it, I’m in a zone. I can’t seem to get into that right now. I’m trying very hard not to try. You know what happens when you do that. You swing at the wrong pitch. You strike out. Then you try harder. You strike out again. You try harder. Guess what that leads to?
These two pictures were made walking around my neighborhood. They were taken at, for me, the wrong time of day. Something got in the way of my normal working hours. See? I told you. External forces.