Write, Damn it Write!

That about sums it up for the day.

Although I want to write and have a long list of projects that I need to work on – my life keeps interfering. But that is what life does after all. It isn’t like it is going to go away and let you work. It teases you – like the wind whipping the trees – making sure you are aware of its invisible power to bend you, shape you, and possibly break you.

Enough!

There’s been a lot on my mind the last few days. Thoughts buzzing in my brain like hornets. They all want to be heard – all want my attention – all require my cool analysis. Perspective is a lovely thing but I’m not sure I have it. I’m trying. Is trying enough? I don’t think I’ve been graded on effort since grade school.

There are books on top of books written about writing. There are also books written about procrastination and leaning effective habits. In the end – we all have to figure these things out for ourselves. My only wish is that I could figure it out and be done with it. Every day changes – some patterns stay for awhile some never get started. I envy people who have that obsessive thing going for them. If they find a pattern that works for them they can maintain it.

Of course if the pattern is a bad pattern….

I have a novella due on January 31st and I need to get moving on it. I’ve written the opening scene – and nothing else. I like beginnings – I think I write them well. I’ve learned how to build endings so now it is just the middles that are driving me mad.

I think one of my problems is that I want life to be a story.

I want certain things to have a well defined beginning, middle, and end. But things don’t end. When I was a project manager my projects wouldn’t end… my project clients would turn into my customer service clients (we weren’t very big). Day to day pushing of requests is a very different thing from working on projects that span months or years. There was an endless quality to the work – all sorts of thing began but nothing ended.

Relationships are the same way – they often begin in fits and starts and end sputtering.

The only place that begins and ends are my stories. They have a life cycle – or at least they do until I write something that takes on a life of its own. You do that – and it too never dies.

If nothing ever dies, if relationships fade but never end because at any moment a person can come back into your life just as suddenly as they left – then how do they sum? I’m not sure I believe in an infinite universe. How do we hold all of this in our head? Our heart?

We are the sum of our experiences – we are the product of our relationships.

Do our relationships define us? No, I think we are defined by them. They shape us and mold us even when we aren’t paying attention to them. Like water over rocks – our relationships wear us into unexpected shapes.  

This was the missing piece. I have things to think about and decisions to make and I needed a different way of viewing my life. Not from inside it – there is too much history and emotion there – but from the outside.

In the end how do I want to be defined? Who do I want to be?

In a story it is all about where you end it. All journeys end in the same place but you can end a story anywhere. You can leave everyone happy or leave everyone in the last scene from Hamlet.

Life is muddier.

We often don’t know where we are going or recognize the important moments until they are past. Is this one of those moments? Or just part of the regular churn of events?

We’ll see.

~ Tess Anderson

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