Archive for the ‘Speaking into the Silence’ Category

Soldier Crawl

In Desert Faith on January 10, 2009 at 12:41 am

A few minutes to midnight and I cannot quite find a restfulness to be able to sleep.  Today was a restless day indeed.  I found the urgency to write about three pages.  It feels like squeezing out a story.  Occasionally, I am confused by this.  I hear others describe their passion as being totally invigorating.  To be quite honest, writing feels like doing a soldier’s crawl into enemy territory.  I feel this impending awareness that ‘I am not supposed to be here.’

Perhaps after these initial battles have been fought, I will have more confidence with my passion.  Right now, I seem to be fighting for my stand.  I am pleased to report that emails have been flowing much more freely through my inbox — a feat I am hoping to continue throughout the year.  It is an expression of freedom, being dynamic and agile.  Boldly declaring that I can (and will) move forward.  Delete!

Onward.  The writing life has involved much reading for me.  Right now, I am 2/3 of the way through Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises, the story of an American expatriate living in post WWI Paris, who takes a fishing trip to Spain.  He also watches the bulls race.  It is interesting how Hemingway tells the story by ‘showing’.  I enjoy Hemingway though his work reminds me of a newspaper writer telling a story.  That said, I cannot bring myself to sit down and read the OC Register.  Perhaps, I reach a quota of newspaper words for the day.

This is my writing life.


Paper Jam

In Speaking into the Silence on December 17, 2008 at 1:57 pm

About ten minutes ago, I was jamming some scissors down the paper cutter trying to clear the jam.  I had tried (as usual) to put a thick stack of down the paper shredder.  Apparently, it doesn’t like to eat all the paper at once.  Upon selecting my only other option (reverse), the engine came to a stand still.  In fact, it no longer makes the whirring sound then the motor is spinning.  Complete jam – I’m awarding you no points and may…I digress.

The scissors seemed the best alternative for plying out the pre-mulched kinks.  Then, my own ‘independence’ caught up with me.  It was like I was on auto pilot.  Tell me again, Father, what my life is like.  The creative process requires self-discipline…strangely enough.  I would tend to associate creativity with randomness, spontaneity, and a lack of structure.  But, on the contrary, creating art requires immense discipline (for me).   That is, it requires the discipline of my time, my energy, my mind, and at times, my finances.  I must be willing to ‘get in the chair’ everyday (as my distiguished colleague, Mr. Dugard, made me aware).

Today’s paper jam was a distraction, an inconvenience, an interruption to the routine I had set.  I have to be willing to let the papers remain unshredded (in the meantime) to focus on my writing.  Why, you might say, do the papers need to be shredded?  Well, currently, they are covering the floor in our spare room, my writing room.  I am responsible to dispose of them by the end of the day.

So, I am choosing to allow chaos in order to create structure.  (paradoxical, me thinks–I  sound like a cross between Shakespeare and Yoda)  I suppose I have to give up one kind of structure in my life (orderliness of room) in order to attain what I want most (orderliness of creativity, passion and, more directly, of writing).

Insomniac Journal

In Desert Faith on December 14, 2008 at 3:58 am

I have been lying awake for the last hour – mulling over changes in my life.  I am reminded of the lyrics from a song by Sara Groves: “But the places they used to fit me, cannot hold the things I’ve learned.  Those roads were closed off to me, while my back was turned.”  Stepping out with my writing has been frightful at times.  Mostly, the newness.  While I have more freedom to set my own schedule and organize my time, I gave up the regular connection and reassurance of co-workers in the office.  Rather than being accountable to co-workers for getting the job done, I am accountable to my word in finishing the book.  Sometimes sitting down to write can feel extremely lonely and isolating.  I am not saying that this is a bad thing, just entirely different than interactions in the office.  The ironic thing is I love that and yet it seems like a very difficult shift.

On the other hand, I am considering the future in light of new awareness with ACCD.  I cannot look at myself or others in the same way (those roads are closed off to me).  Though I tell myself I cannot go forward any more, I have found a way to put one foot in front of another and keep moving forward.  Right now, I would like to have my career path all packaged and organized; my attempt to control and be certain that what I hope for will actually come to pass.  My worrying is a fickle and even short-sighted attempt to maintain control over the uncertainty.  A promise is so much more than a manual.  Just as beauty is so much more than quantifiable traits.

Last Day, First Day

In Speaking into the Silence on December 3, 2008 at 2:24 pm

Yesterday was my last day at my job of two years.  It was a day spent writing Thank You cards, tying up loose ends with projects and saying goodbye.  I had a going away lunch with one of the teams with which I have worked closely.  And ultimately, I packed up my bag to leave.

I am excited on two fronts; both being a writer, but also supporting the Breakthrough training this weekend.  Although today is the first day of ‘stepping into writing’.  It is also new with the Breakthrough training.  My life has been changed from paralysis to moving forward boldly.  I am excited to stand with others as they take new ground in their lives.

As far as my writing, I have written 20 of 100 pages with Drenian.  I need to work on the tagline.  In describing the story, I have called it a ‘Coming-of-age story for a young man’, which is like the textbook version.  I want the tagline to connect quickly.  I would go to a textbook for information, but not connection.  My story is about a young man named Drenian, who lives near the mythical city of Alandria.  His father disappeared two years earlier.  After a shaman tells him a story about a band of warriors that live in the mountains, he decides to seek them out; thinking they may have something to do with his father’s disappearance.  The story covers mystical terrain as the boy pieces together clues about his father’s disappearance and in the process becomes a man.

Going to the Polls

In Speaking into the Silence on November 4, 2008 at 11:28 am

It was raining pretty hard this morning.  Although stormy skies are unusual for Southern California, I welcomed the rhythmic drizzle in memory of my mid-western roots.  Today marks one of the first critical elections during my life.  At least, this is the first election to which I have paid serious attention.  There are many levels to the conversation surrounding the candidates – at least Barack & McCain; some of the conversations are Republican/Democrat, Racial barriers, Age, Health, Policies, Comparison to the current administration, social issues, economic issues, etc.  And the list goes on.   I will vote this afternoon.

But enough talk about politics.  I have committed to writing one page of my book for about the next thirty days.  Man, that is a stretch!  I had no idea that creative activities could require discipline.  It requires that I stay focused on the story and my vision for it.  (My book perishes for lack of vision – spun off a proverb) On the one hand, it is good to be prepared to write and have the creativity stored up.  On the other hand, art seems a violent act of assertion.  It is Speaking in to the Silence.  James Taylor called it a ‘Daring Daylight Escape’.  I like that. Read the rest of this entry »