“You have to understand what all great painters understand: In order to forget the rules, you must first know them and respect them.”
I stand at the pub table just off our kitchen, waiting for the words to find me. Knowing what an athlete knows: That to achieve your best performance your muscles must be relaxed. That you need to breathe and focus. And so I walk. Back and forth. Back and forth. I walk into the kitchen, then to the family room. Back to home base – the pub table. I stare at the computer screen. An exercise in futility.
Some writers can write anywhere. In a busy cafe, where people coming and going, having conversations your ears can’t help but hear, only serve as their inspiration. In a park, where Mother Nature guides their words as golden sun rays filter through the trees. Near a playground, where the sound of children’s laughter and delighted squeals send their words soaring onto paper. Or a writing group, where the collective buzz of energy causes their hands to fly across the keyboard.
I AM NOT ONE OF THOSE PEOPLE.
Every time I try, I always come away looking and feeling like a blank page that words would surely never spring from. Obviously, yes, words come to me throughout the day. As I wash dishes, watch TV, listen to music, read or take a walk. So much so, that often I can’t write them down fast enough. Some nights as I lay down to rest, wishing my words could be put to bed: like an overtired child, restless and weary, as they fight a good nights slumber.
While I know that my words constantly churn in and around my brain. Swirling within me like a concentric circle, always leading me to my center. My muse. My light. I’ve come to realize after trial and error.
I NEED MY WRITING ROOM.
Not the one within my heart and soul. Not the one that sits tapping into my intuition. But a literal place that softens my edges. The one that turns my eyes to look at things as if through a unique pair of glasses. Diffusing the harshness while still allowing me to see. The place that turns my words into sentences. My sentences into paragraphs. My paragraphs into pages. And my pages into a book.
A BEGINNING AND AN END. UNTIL A NEW BEGINNING BEGINS AGAIN.
As I sit in my office where all my past words have gathered…waiting in the air, their perfumed scent enchants me. I close my eyes, inhaling its intoxicating muse. It’s silence – my symphony. They are everywhere. Omnipresent. Buzzing in the air like the most magical white noise I’ve ever heard. Camouflaged in the paint on my office wall as if written in invisible ink, waiting for my eyes to light on them as I look from wall to wall, ceiling to floor: waiting for the answers to come. Or better yet…the questions. Peeking at me through my window as I look outside to find the color of my words. They are in the rug underneath my bare feet as I reach to feel the texture of my words. I see them on the bookshelves enshrined within each book. A magical treasure each unto itself.
REMINDING ME THAT A SINGULAR WORD, BASED ON A SINGULAR THOUGHT, CAN ONE DAY GROW INTO A VOLUMINOUS BOOK.
As I sit in my office remembering the rules and forgetting them all: I shall remember what works best for me. And as I experiment with words, recognizing their weight and girth.
I WILL REMEMBER WHAT POWER A SMALL WORD CAN HOLD AND THAT A WORD IS NEVER SMALL IF WRITTEN IN UNISON WITH AN EXPANSIVENESS OF THOUGHT.