Hello to all my new followers! I see you and I'm happy to do so. Thank you ever so much for joining me for this crazy ride we call the writing life. I'm grateful, truly.
We've been discussing some pretty heavy subjects here lately. I hope I'm not weighting anyone down. I'm just very passionate about telling stories the way they come to us, grit and all. Too many times I've sat down to write and I've jumped in front of the bus instead of going alone with it just for the sake of its final destination. Stories are meant to be told and it is our job, as writers, to tell them in the most real and raw way that we can.
I have this weird habit. I sit down to write and I start out with this amazing idea. It’s almost complete in my head and I know if I just spit it out onto the page it will en-flesh itself and become what I see in my imagination.
Then something happens. I’m not sure what it is. I just know that my passion fizzles and I start hem-hawing around the keyboard. I start typing things like “she sighed”, “he grimaced”, “the villain laughed maniacally”. Ugh.
True, sometimes I’m just tired. I’ve been working since 8am on school work, posts, novels and short stories among other things and I’m burnt out. No worries. Take a tea break, come back, start over.
But most of the time that’s not the case. Confession time! MOST OF THE TIME I’M JUST PLAIN LAZY.
There. I said it. Don’t make me repeat myself.
It hurts to write from my guts all the time! It’s painful, it’s emotional, I end up in a heap on the floor crying when I have to kill one of my lovelies (and yes, Mom, sometimes you DO have to kill your characters). I get disoriented when I have to come back to the “real world”. I’m grumpy. I’m spent. I’m raw and the slightest glance from flesh and bone hurt terribly. Every nerve ending is on fire and I’m a walking time bomb. I don’t like this!
But THIS is where my most potent writing lives. This weird, bizarre realm between real and sugar coated. This twilight village of shadows that rent my hair out and drag me down thorny paths and through moss covered lakes. I’ll end up dirty and sweating and scratched. Bleeding and angry and in desperate need of a shower. Why can’t I just write clean and nice and proper?
It’s kind of like crying in public. I always wanted to be Audrey Hepburn or Grace Kelley. Oh how they could cry! Delicate, demure, tears in doe eyes that tumble and make the leading man rush to their aid, swooning. Nope. Not me. I’m all snot and splotched skin. I don’t cry, I sob. I scream and rant and moan in agony (and no, I’m not just talking about the day I was told Firefly was cancelled or I came home from seeing Star Wars: Episode One). I’m just not an emotionally graceful person. It’s no surprise (or at least it shouldn’t be) that I’m not graceful when it comes to writing.
Writing IS emotion and we will handle it the same way we handle anything emotional in our lives. I’ve always admired those people who can remain calm and even-keeled in the face of traumatic news or injustice. They are able to speak out, to carry on, to do what needs to be done with a quiet resilience. Now, I’m all about keeping my snot in until I’m alone or at least when it’s just my husband around. But boy when the bomb falls it’s not just devastation it’s total nuclear fall-out. I’m talking the kind that creates zombies.
THIS is what happens when I write myself raw. It’s a scary place to be but I know, that I know, that I KNOW that when I write from this place what comes out is so far beyond anything I could have ever written. THIS is the place I tap into the great universal vein that we all strive for with everything we write.
I guess I’ll just have to buy more tissue, invest in Band-Aids and take more showers.
Are you like me? Do you write yourself raw just to know you’re there? That you’ve tapped into something greater than yourself? Or are you the opposite? When you're in the flow, is it painless and transcendent? Don’t worry-I won’t hate you…forever.
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