Consider this my first "official" entry into my thoughts on research, and the ups and downs of it. I find myself hitting the "research block" as it were with my current mindset. In this case its a mental one-and it comes back to a question that sometimes comes up: why are you doing this?
This though comes up every so often, as I am doing the writing and research for my own interest; and because the area of interest-masks-may not be among the top research items that people do, particularly when it comes to its history, as I've said before-it's a akin to search for puzzle pieces in a field full of random puzzle pieces. There's a lot of searching and scouring to find stuff that I can use. And because it can get labor intensive, the "why am I doing this" will resurface, and it pulls me back into blockage.
So how does one get past this "research block"? This isn't like I've got a deadline to meet, or that I'm being paid to do this (I only wish!). It's purely for my own interest, and maybe I can get a book published about it down the road if I'm that fortunate. I am sure it doesn't help that while there are people with interests in masks out there, my interest, the anthropology both historic and modern, not a lot of people are into that part of it. I do keep searching though, for the history aspect and people who might follow it.
So how do I come out of these blockages? Often it's just time: taking a walk, or taking things in another direction, or just not thinking about it for a while. Sometimes however it can take a while to "get back to it" when taking a break-and that requires some serious mental discipline.
So here's to taking some time for now to see if I can unclog the blockage.