I have come to a weird, twisted place in my life.
I am too lucky to be a writer.
There. I said it. The thing that has made me feel so crazy for months.
There’s this woman named Flannery O’Conner. A writer. She said “nothing needed to happen in a writer’s life after they were 20. By then, they had experienced more than enough to last their creative life.”
I’m getting awfully close to being twenty.
I often have a hard time drawing inspiration for my writing from my experiences. What would I write about? Buying a coffee? Getting rained on- but I always remember an umbrella. The worst things that ever happened to me was the death of my grandmother and my grandfather. Everyone loses grandparents. Nobody wants to keep hearing about it from me.
I’ve been religious all my life.
I love my family, and I have never been in danger of being pushed away from them.
I don’t struggle with or suffer from any mental illnesses.
I’m not crazy about my body shape, but I’m not obese.
I have enough food and clothes, I go to sleep every night in a safe home.
If this is what my life has been like until now, where am I going to get all that creative inspiration for the many many years after twenty?
Don’t get me wrong.
I am unbelievably appreciative.
I am so thankful every morning for what I have been gifted, this beautiful, happy life that I live.
I am grateful for what my struggles are- simple ones. Small ones. Sometimes, ironically, even my problems are clearly blessings.
But, when I need to sit down and write, it makes things harder.
I want to inspire people. I want to touch souls. I want to write things that are achingly beautiful.
The writers that I know and have had the pleasure of having conversations with are all on this magical journey of things happening. They have all pulled themselves out of somewhere. They have met real life up close and personal, and conquered.
The craziest thing I ever did was switch schools, and it was because I was crying myself to sleep at the first one.
When I lay in my bed at night desperately reaching for something to write about, disposing of yet another poem about nothing..I yearn for experiences. Something out of my daily routine. Something that isn’t careful. I’m so very careful.
Something interesting has happened though, and I’m trying to open my eyes to it, and accept it. To accept this as my mission, to accept this as part of the reason G-d gave me the will and desire to write and write and write.
People say “You always write what I didn’t even realize I was trying to say”
I always smile. Sometimes I get frustrated- is that all I’m doing? Writing other peoples thoughts for them?
It also at times made me feel smaller. To me, it meant that nothing about my writing was unique. Everyone feels this way. I just feel it necessary to string a bunch of words together to voice an opinion that everyone has.
These are some of my low-writing moments. At those moments, my ego feels trampled upon. I wonder why I share my writing after all. By the way- why do I? I am absolutely sure that I have no idea.
That’s not the point though.
The point is, I always felt left out of the club. The writers club. The people who write eloquently and beautifully about real life.
I haven’t seen enough, and I’m sorry Flannery O’Connor. If I have had to experience everything already, than I am screwed, so frankly, I don’t believe in your statement.
The writers club is pretty exclusive. It’s full of broken people, fixing themselves with words. I just was never broken enough.
I don’t ask for challenges. I’d rather live a life with not enough to write about, than suffer for a minute.
But I know I’ll always find what to write about.
Because in my club, and it might only have one member, I want to be a writer who doesn’t need to be in pain to write.
I want to write about the the things I discover in my life. I want to write about my childs first smile, my husbands weird habit, a day shopping for my grandchild. Those are all things that will happen after 20.
But until then, I can still write. I can write about office jobs and making dinner, learning to let go of people that are not good for me, crossing the street and loving my nephews. These are things that you feel too.
My writing might never be show-stopping, or earth shattering. It might never be about me winning or losing wars. It might never be as unique as the things that I have spent hours reading.
But it’s my writing. And all of you tell me that you feel it too. That it made you think again, it made you feel expressed.
How can I ask for a bigger blessing?
My writing might get boring sometimes.
But you know what?
That’s because life is boring sometimes.
Just to end this off with a non-boring, exciting bang, I am off to Colorado this week on the most spontaneous trip I have ever taken. Perhaps it will inspire some non-boring writing.
Because after being terrified by Flannery O’Conners quote, I got inspired by a different quote. From a movie. Because those are better. That quote said:
“A writer is the sum of their experiences. Go get some“
It’s time for me to stop complaining about not having enough experiences, and just go do things. Go find things to experience.
So I’m off. On a week-long trip to the middle of America.