Friday, August 31, 2012

where i am

"…just start where you are. It's a luxury to be in the mood to write. It's a blessing but it's not a necessity. Writing is like breathing, it's possible to learn to do it well, but the point is to do it no matter what."
- Julia Cameron

I have made up countless rules for myself in order to write. Conditions that I somehow believed to be prerequisites to writing. I have this illusion of a perfect piece of work emerging only when these conditions are met. For instance, the house must be clean and in order so that my own thoughts will be in order. There must be a huge chunk of free time stretched out ahead of me so I will not feel rushed or pressured. I must not be disturbed in any way. The temperature in the room must be just so, not too hot, not too cold. It must be early in the day so I will feel like my writing is fresh like the morning sun. There must not be any work to be done after, no errands, no obligations. Meals must be satisfying but not exhausting nor time-consuming to prepare. Also, the dishes must somehow be magically washed away or else the sight of a full dirty sink will distract from the writing.

Needless to say, trying to meet all of these conditions means that no writing is ever done. Five days would have passed and I would still be planning and preparing to write.

The paper must be smooth. The pen must be perfect. The ink must be an exact shade of turquoise.

Handwritten is better than typing. I should wait until my fingers lose their stiffness from playing too much Assassin's Creed. I must not be sleepy, so it will be better if I lay down for a few minutes and took a nap.

I must finish all the items on my to-do list for the day before I can write. Or else all those to-dos will keep on marching back and forth before me on the blank pages.

All the fuss and all the nitpicking for the perfect time to write. Yet all I have to do is to sit down and to write. Ignore everything else. Write as if everything else depended on it. Write for fifteen minutes. Even for five minutes. In five days that would have already been almost half an hour of writing compared to no writing because the windows needed a curtain change.

I have created for myself little superstitions that make writing like some kind of a Holy Grail. I am sabotaging my own path to the creative life I am craving for.

Today I take a burning torch and burn it all away. The rules, the conditions, the excuses. The distractions, the hidden desire for instant perfection, the reluctance to begin for fear of never finishing.

Today I will steal time to write, and to make art, and I will do it every single day from here on. No, I will claim time, for it is the desire of my heart and the calling of my spirit.

Because really, what is it that I dream of, achingly, as I go to bed every night?

To be a writer and an artist, a creator and a crafter.

Then I must live it. Become what I want by doing. To cease all pretense at preparation, to crush every ounce of fear and brew it for courage. To leap into the void of blankness, of possibility, and to make things happen. To make my life happen. To make me happen.

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