I’ll be honest, with the holidays in full-swing, I’m low on time, and saving my words for my manuscript. But don’t worry! I still have some really good stuff for you to read. It’s just not my stuff.
I watched a death today. It was hard to be sad and hard not to be sad – it was a fast death after a long and good life, but that still doesn’t make it easy.
Animals, man. They are… amazing. They grow our hearts.
Now, having gone through school and numerous critique groups, I’m amazed how little raw talent actually buys you. It’s about energy. Thick skin. An open mind. Caffeine. Those ingredients will take you far. Sure, there are exceptions. Writers who get published the first time they dash out a novel, their very first draft. But let’s face it, most of those people either have parents in publishing or are total assholes (geniuses). The rest of us? We work. We suffer. We live and develop as people and professionals. As we develop, we learn which of our stories are most worth telling, and we learn how to tell them.
Everything about this post reminded me of me. And as I said in the comments, after 20 or so years of coasting on whatever amount of smarts and talent I was born with, it’s been hard to retrain myself.
I did not become a writer or a teacher of writing because it seemed easy, or because it was something I happened upon. Instead, I did not want to be in cahoots with the nightmare. Creativity, it seems to me, is the most powerful tool we have as human beings. It is what makes us capable of war, of hate, of truly despicable forms of violence. But, too, it is what makes us capable of compassion, of love, of empathy. And I believe that by fostering the creativity born of writing, born in well told stories and in boldly written poems, that we are contributing to a kind of creative power that is much needed.