Albus Dumbledore once said to one of his favorite students (possibly favorite student), “It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.” It’s interesting food for thought. We’re all born with the potential to do great things in different areas, but what it all comes down to, what really matters, is what we do with that potential. This got me thinking. Well, actually I was thinking first, then Dumbledore’s words came to me because I can relate almost any situation to Harry Potter. It’s a talent. Go ahead and try to stump me. I dare you.
So, what got me thinking about this? Mostly it was just that my mind never really stopped thinking about writing since it started with a previous post. This is sort of a continuation or spinoff from that post. I’m not sure what’s gotten into me lately with multi-part posts but I’m hoping this will be the last of them…at least for awhile.
I’m going to take a second here and toot my own horn and say that writing is one of my abilities. It’s what I can do and what I’ve chosen to do for a living. Although that has yet to pay off, I’m sticking with it (for now). As bleak as the outlook on jobs is, I knew this before graduating and I new this going into the field. I’ve made my choice–although, sometimes it doesn’t really feel like I have a choice…read on and you’ll get why–and I’m dealing with it.
Writing and I share a love/hate relationship. I’m not sure how other writers’ thought processes work but I’m pretty sure they share a similar relationship.
I love writing. He’s my first love. Yes, he is my first love. I know a lot of people would refer to an inanimate, intangible noun as a female, but I am female and while I have absolutely no problem with same-sex relationships, I just don’t swing that way. Sorry, ladies but we just create way too much drama sometimes and I don’t think I’d be able to handle dating someone who is as dramatic as I have a tendency be. So, as I was saying, I love writing. It helps me express myself–I’ve got a lot of angry poetry–and lets me just escape life when it all goes to shit because life has a way of doing just that from time to time. Writing helps get my mind off things I’d rather not think about for awhile. Journalistic writing has also allowed me to learn about all sorts of different topics (robots, anybody?) that I normally wouldn’t have had the opportunity to learn about otherwise and for that I’ll always be grateful.
However, love it as much as I do, I honestly hate writing sometimes. The urge to write comes and goes at the most inconvenient times. I have seriously gotten out of bed at three in the morning just to write something–whether it’s poetry, dialogue or whatever. Just as I have seriously been on deadline and with no motivation whatsoever to type a single word because I’d rather keep reading whatever book I’ve started. It’s not easy having the mind of a writer, the hunger of a bookworm, the motivation of a sloth and occasionally, the attention span of a goldfish. It’s even more difficult when you’re on deadline just as I have been on more occasions than I’d like to count.
Another reason I hate writing is because of what it does to my sanity sometimes. Through our relationship, I’ve developed another relationship. A relationship with someone I’ve come to call The Narrator–and yes, she most definitely deserves to be capitalized. She is as much a part of me as writing is.
For you Family Guy fans out there, The Narrator does not function the same way as Peter does when he narrates his life for two weeks. While The Narrator never seems to shut up like Peter, she doesn’t keep a running commentary of my actions. Contrarily, she is constantly yammering about what I want to write. Confused? Well, let me clarify a bit. A lot of what you’ve read in this post and in my previous posts has been thanks to The Narrator. Whether I’m reading, working, driving or eating she’s there–spouting dialogue between my fictional characters, rambling on for this blog or conjuring up the perfect lead for a story. I just hear her in my head. Speaking the words to write to me and I think the only time she really shuts up is when I finally start writing. We share the same voice–at least the same voice I hear when I speak out loud. So, basically The Narrator is the voice inside my head–my voice–telling me what to write.
The Narrator is a big reason I hate writing. She just doesn’t shut up sometimes! It’s enough to drive a girl crazy and after reading this post, I wouldn’t be surprised if most of you think she’s already driven and left me there (I’ll admit that this post has gotten way out of hand and has made me sound somewhat delusional…I’m really not). One time I asked Wynn if this ever happened to her and she just looked at me like I was crazy and said, “Uh, no. I think that’s just you.”
Maybe Wynn’s right. Maybe it is just me. However, as crazy as she may drive me and as much as I wish that she would just shut up sometimes, I would never want The Narrator to take off completely because that will be when it all really goes to shit for me.
Writers know better than to mess with the mojo that works for them.