" SpiritofSaltSpring:BC:Canada:GulfIslands:SaltSpring:Salt Spring:

February 02, 2012

Ode to the Writing Compulsion

There is a lot of writing to sort out these days. There's the SFU Writer's Studio writing which is really THE writing that matters to me right now, and will for at least the next year.

Then there are the ideas and queries to write that are a constant swirl in my head, driving me to distraction, to the point that I have started Mindmapping out the ideas and which magazines might make sense to target in a never ending attempt to make some money from freelance writing.

Then, there's this Blog which, isn't important, just my reprieve and my indulgence as you may have noticed.

Oh, and then there's everything else: Life.
I feel that I should write a Dear John letter to my friends for the year ahead because nothing is more important to me this year than trying to finish some writing that I want to do (and complete).  So, I forgive you for not understanding because I know some of you are wondering why I don't just get a job and be happy. Have money. Plan vacations. Get back on track after a departure that began with Salt Spring and seems to have turned a mid-life detour into a round the world excursion that's created a full-blown 9-5 refugee.

How can I explain? I can't really. But I'll put it this way. Writing is a bit like the state that you enter right before you fall asleep and right before you wake up. Even though, to an outsider, you may look like you're there, you're not. You're still back on the last paragraph of the thing you wrote. You're still wondering if in that query letter you should have put the first sentence of the second paragraph as the lead sentence or if the first sentence is alright afterall. So, if I look at you blankly when you've just asked a question or I say Yes and it makes no sense as the answer to your question, it may be because I'm not actually with you yet. I'm still with me. In my head. Again.

Am I having the kind of time we've all had at 17 about to scare the hell out of ourselves on the roller coaster at the PNE, screaming like a banshee (whatever those are) right before the 95 year old box on wheels heads down the rickety tracks full speed ahead. Wheeeeeee! No.
Am I experiencing the pleasure of being 20-something again, necking on the rocks at Lighthouse park with a cute boy and the sun warming everything on a brilliant August day? Not even close. I'm not having that kind of time and at the same time, I don't want to be anywhere else. Where I am feels where I'm supposed to be. So, please forgive me. Show some mercy.

Think of it this way. In the same way I have been known to look at each one of you at some point in time and wondered how you could put up with so much, asking myself like a detective trying to solve some British Murder Mystery why the hell you don't just stop, I'm asking you to recognize that for me, my compulsion, my vocation, is my writing; a pre-destined friend, the kind who chose me.

So, I'm asking you to indulge me in the same way I begrudgingly accept those things I see in your own lives that make me crazy and then maybe you'll  understand.  It's just me, at 50, knowing it's now or never to do what has mattered forever for reasons I've never really understood ever since I was born.

So, thanks. In advance. For your patience. Or not.

No comments: