A Writer’s Life

Anxiety. Worry. Elation. Ecstasy. Fear. Wonder. Hope. Belief. Drive. Determination. Frustration. Impatience. Joy… The list is endless.

Everyday I am mired by multiple emotions as I work to release what’s locked inside. Sometimes thoughts are easily accessed and interpreted and my morning passes quickly with me in a daze, furiously typing these snippets. Other days the words are there, but locked behind an invisible barrier. On those mornings, each word is determined with such effort and I feel as though I’m wading in water or moving in circles. Frustration builds and with that frustration comes anxiety and writer’s block.

Over time I am learning to trust my intuition and rather than continuously edit as I write, I allow myself to write whatever words come to mind. At times my inner critic is difficult to silence, and I start to judge and critique my writing as I am working on a draft. In those moments, I try to center myself and focus again on the words rather than the editing of them. This helps on days when it feels impossible to focus.

Some days I am impatient to finish. I want the finished product without moving through the multiple steps to complete my work. On these days I have to remember my love of the act of writing itself. I tell myself it is about the journey, not the final destination.

Finally there are days when I am filled with joy as I furiously create a new world. The act of creation itself… to sit in the morning with a blank screen and by days end having new thoughts, characters, or emotions wrapped in metaphor written on a page… There’s no other feeling like it. There are moments even, when I feel as though I have left my consciousness and another has stepped in: another who writes furiously to tell his or her story. On those mornings I am a conduit for something bigger than myself.

Stories need to be told. They help guide our way and provide a reflection/examination of the joys and absurdities and struggles and triumphs of life. They provide context and proof that we are not alone, nor are we as different as we think.

And so, I am on a new journey, writing a new novel. I am in the early stages (i.e. 17,000 words; 50 pages), but am excited to see where this will lead.

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