I have finally submitted my story “Roadkill” to a publisher for consideration! As the submission process goes I will not find out for about 90days what the results will be. So wish me luck! If you wish to see a sampling of that story please look to my Blog category above entitled “Story Excerpts” to find it.(or the blog directly above this one) Below is my latest blog on what makes me tick as writer somewhat and for you the potential reader get to know me a little bit better and give you a sense of where I’m coming from…
Fear, Fantasy, and Feelings in my writing? Why whatever do you mean Mr. Wardlow? Well first, I am not talking about what I actually write about. I am not talking about the sentence I write that creates a scene for you, the reader, to get you into the mood for what’s coming next around the corner. I am not talking about the fear which may trickle into your brain and tickle the mind into wanting to look over your shoulder as you walk a lonely trail or to look a little closer at that open closet door in your room at night as you lay in bed.
I am not talking about the fancies or fantasies which may take you from the daily mundane life that you may lead to a magical arena where possibilities of life abound with but a belief in it wholeheartedly.
I am not talking about feelings for a character or a conflict that has your soul invested in those bounded pages (or digitized pages) you hold in your hands as long as the story lasts (may it be forever).
No, I am talking about MY fears, MY Fantasies, MY feelings when it comes to writing. All three have been present and continue to be present in me when I write.
First let’s take Fear. Isn’t that a feeling? Yep, you betcha. So why I do I call out it separately. Well for me, it’s what drives me. It’s a big Neon Light. A big “F” blinking in my brain at times, for awhile though it was what want drove everything else away about my writing. It pushed away my passion for it; it pushed away the wonder of it. It held me down like giant’s foot pressed heavy upon my chest. Even now I am wondering as I write this, who I am to be talking about myself, who am I to think I can talk about myself, who am I to think anyone cares what I have to say matters. Who am I? Then the fear goes away because this is who I am. I think there is value in what I say. Take it or leave it. So I am glad that I have that fear from time to time. I am glad it is there, ready to creep in. I believe it keeps me and my work real ultimately in the end.
Now comes the Fantasy part; for me it’s allowing my brain to access the childlike part of me. It is the what-ifs in life, the endless scenarios, and the dreams most people seem to find only when their heads hit the pillow at night when they fall to sleep. I often get lost in thought on a story or have an errant thought meandering through my mind from a scene all day long. I remember my mother when I was very young in life taking me to see an ear specialist because she thought I was going deaf. So often I would ignore her unintentionally when she talked to me directly. (I past all the hearing tests with flying colors) I have always wanted more to the story of my life than what I was born into as so many of us probably do. I found this escape through daydreaming, movies, reading, and writing. It’s my form of meditation in life.
Finally we come to Feelings, what a word that is. I cannot sit down to write unless I feel something. I cannot put pen to paper unless I’m inspired to write, or so I thought. That thought in the beginning of my desire to be a writer was my Achilles heel. It was a self-made self-induced writer’s block to my psyche and my performance. I don’t wait for that feeling anymore. I found you can’t if you wish to be a serious writer and for the longest time I didn’t get that.
Sting, one of my favorite songwriters and singers said pretty much the same thing. He said (I’m paraphrasing here), that writing is the most difficult thing he does but he doesn’t wait to be inspired. He goes after it and basically wrestles it to the ground until it submits to his will. So I guess that’s the best analogy for what I do. I wrestle the story to the ground and put it in a choke hold until it passes out. You’re mine you little bastard.
I look to great things happening in my life. I expect it be hard fought to get what I want. I know the odds. I look forward to the challenge. I have the tools to get me there, my fear keeps me sharp, my daydreaming keep me supplied with endless ideas, and my feelings keep me grounded.
As they always say, if it was easy everyone would do it