Had a killer post planned for today. All outlined in my head. Woke up early to get ‘er done. And then I went out to fetch the paper and everything changed.
Life is like that sometimes.
It wasn’t a headline that rocked me this morning. It was a quote inserted above the headline that read, “I feel it draws on everything I’ve ever been or done or learned. In this role, I get to draw on everything that I am.” Below the headline, which isn’t relevant here, was a picture of man speaking into a microphone, with a solemn look on his face, as if he was telling his children about life.
And I thought, what a lucky man indeed.
Maybe it’s because I’m old, but this hit me like a ton of rejection slips. Because that’s how I feel about writing. Some days I hate it, but most days it makes me feel alive in a way that nothing else — avocation-wise… my wife and son always remind me that I’m very much alive — can. It makes me remember the dark days of the past few years during which I felt I had nothing to write for. A feeling that is a close second to nothing to live for in terms of weight on the soul.
And so I’m back at it. Writing two books about writing. Writing another novel. And writing this blog, which if you’ve been here a while — with the exception of this morning’s post — is really about much more than me. As a blog should be. I tell people this is an instructional writing resource, because — again, with the exception of this morning’s post — I don’t really want to write about me. I want to write about you.
That’s a lesson the years have taught. It’s not about me. Never has been. Wish I’d have figured that out earlier.
But I digress, back to that newspaper quote. Writing doesn’t become that significant a part in your life until you begin to take it seriously, to submit yourself to it and be vulnerable to the reality that it’s always bigger than you are. It demands that you draw on everything you’ve ever been or done or learned. Everything that you are.
And becomes, in doing so, everything you’ve ever dreamed of being.
Which makes us, as writers, very lucky folks indeed.