But reader, most of the time I just muddle along, wondering why on earth decided this might be a good idea.
Writing, that’s what I’m talking about.
I have what I think is going to be a great plot line, and then I sit and stare. Stare blankly out the window, or at the empty page, a white computer screen.
I’d like to know reader, why it is that I have the best, clear and concise ideas about what I’m writing when I’m totally unable to jot them down, or spend an hour working on a first draft. ??? Don’t know? Well I’m going to try to throw a few thoughts out there and see if I can come up with some kind of an explanation!
Are you with me reader?
Picture this reader, I’m walking with my dogs, along a concrete roadside path, with traffic hurtling along beside me, carrying workers to various places of employment. The frosty chill fogging every breath as I plod along, listening to an audio book, some music, or even a recorded sermon from church.
Then, out of the fumes of a passing truck springs an image, a whispy thread of an idea, the audio book narration dims into white noise as I race my mind around the thought and I scramble to find the voice recording device on my phone.
Quickly I try to voice the thought, the scene, the imagery and as I stand, dogs patiently waiting, traffic zooming. Then the sound of my own voice seems to flatten the possibilities, highlight the inadequacies of my creativity. It almost convinces me that I should just give it away, forget it, no one would want to read any of the garbage I call writing. Who am I trying to kid?
Or then there’s the moment when I’m pushing a shopping trolley through the aisles. Trying to choose between the various advantages each dish washing liquid offers, and wham, here it comes, a mind picture so perfect, so crisp and clean, it rivals the advertised promises on every item in the aisle. But how to get that idea locked down? I’m hardly going to record myself describing it in the middle of Coles or Woolworths. I imagine some brave souls may not be inhibited, but not me. So I scribble on the back of my shopping list, all the while being jostled and bumped by busy shoppers, frustrated with the weird woman muttering apologies and scribbling.
The worst is when I’m in a conversation and I vague off, my story forming or characters telling me some important detail of their life. I can hardly interrupt my friends to jot it down.
“ah sorry, hold that thought,” I could interrupt, “I have to write down something for my story! I was listening, really I was, but hang on . . . ” Yes, reader, you can see that doing something like that may seem a bit rude to a friend or even an acquaintance who has been telling me a very important tale of their own.
I wonder if this is normal, if all writers do these mental gymnastics trying to catch a fleeting thought. Still, if I ignored it all, where would I be?
I think these thoughts pop into my conscience when I’m busy doing something else, because I’m not striving or thinking. My sub conscience is quiet and in it’s own easy and unpressured way, is nutting out the variables and percolating the subject. Then, when it’s ready, and I’m not trying, it just puts it out there.
It’s my job to have my catcher’s mitt at the ready and save the thought, grab it before it ricochets out into the unknown.
Never to be seen again.