Some days I don’t know if I live in the spaces between the lines I write or if I write in between the lines of my life. Don’t read that sentence too many times, but do you ever wonder what drives what?
The other night at my sister’s house, I sat at the table with her and two other writers after dinner and somehow we wound the conversation around to how we’re always waiting on the next line. We laughed when we admitted how we can each be in some dramatic situation with a lover, friend, family member, etc. — but no matter what goes down we always have our antennae up to catch a well-turned phrase or profound thought that might lead us to a beautiful sentence or paragraph, a song, a story, a book, a screenplay. I think what I said was, “You’d crawl over your dying Mama to get to the next good line.” No one disagreed.
You might laugh at that. And it is a funny image and thought. But it’s not as much of a stretch as it may seem. We’re always collecting. Be careful what you say around a writer — you might hear it come back at you later.
Artists often have dramatic lives, which begs the question — do we have dramatic lives because we need something to create about or do we just have dramatic lives and then can’t help but become artists so that we have a way to deal with it, to process it, to make something out of it all so that it has some sort of meaning?
I’m sure it’s some of both on most days, one or the other on other days.
You can’t time creative convergence — sometimes I have the space in my day and can’t get it going, sometimes it’s going and I don’t have the opportunity to sit with it and get it down. Crazy notebooks filled with pages of scribbles I make in the heat of the inspired moment, approximately two-hundred, seventy-seven notes in my phone of titles, sentences, ideas… I’ll never get to them all. What a way to live, in a state of waiting, fingers tapping. Waiting for the wave to rise, hoping you’ll know when it’s coming, and being able to hop on and ride it out when it does.
It’s cloudy today. I’m contemplative. You probably noticed.
Thank you for reading my thoughts.
Happy Monday, Y’all.