Writers write. A writer is an artist, painting pictures and stories with words like a composer with music or a painter with paint. There is a fire inside, an aching, burning flame. There is often an urgent feeling of want-to-do, must-do, have-to-do. There is rarely a choice. There is a feeling of being incomplete when one is struck by need and there is no outlet.
It is an illness, a disease, a beautiful sickness that storms feverishly through every fiber of your being. It wakes you hot and confused in the night, it leaves you itchy and distraught when otherwise engaged. It is a blessing. It is a curse.
I have penned words on pristine lined paper and typed my way through screens and screens of text until it seems my eyes may fall out. But I have also borrowed a pen from the neighboring table and written on scrap paper, napkins, or the margins of flyers – whatever may be handy. I frequently have to fight the urge to jump out of the shower, soapy and dripping wet to attack my keyboard or jot something down. I carry with me a notepad and pen and use it regularly. If I am stuck without my notepad, my phone has a word program I can use.
The act of putting things down in print seems incredibly helpful to me. No matter what problem arises, or what may loom ahead, pen to paper or fingers to keyboard seems to make the time easier. There is a easing of my heart and a lightening of my burden when I write. It is my catharsis, my meditation, my ability to self-help and work things out.
It is my thoughts, my feelings, my life.
It is the best of me, it is the worst of me.
I write angry. I pound my thoughts down as furiously as they occur and strangle sentences until they cry for mercy. I create a oddly detached place where I can create linear reasoning for what I would say if only I could. I learn why I think as I do and sometimes I decide my anger is irrational. I vent my frustrations or heal myself.
I write when I am sad. My eyes close in a futile effort to contain my inner misery even while my tears stain the table as I type. I pour my heart and soul and grief and turmoil into the bottomless well of my processor. I tell my pages my secrets; my electronic friend who can never betray me or my trust.
I write when I am happy. My passion knows no bounds as I eagerly allow my fingers to traipse across the keyboard. The joy I feel translates itself into words of love and light and peace. The beauty I see and think and feel blossoms across my page and is preserved like a pressed flower for my future self to enjoy.
I write when I write. Instead of spending a finite treasure of words inside me, writing makes the next words flow more smoothly, more easily and refills the coffers in my mind. The act of using words allows the remainder to multiply, propagate, and burst from myself with imagination.
I’m one of those people who always want to write, who always can write. I may not wish to write about what I am contractually obligated to at that moment, but I never have trouble writing ‘wild’ (as one of my favorite esteemed friends calls it). I am only unable to write when it appears the world may come to an end.
Yesterday I couldn’t write. Today again I would say I couldn’t write, but that is obviously, patently, ironically untrue. Apparently, the world, and my heart, will go on. (I implore you to forgive the reference. Please note that the author has imbedded that song into her own head as well and is being soundlessly yet musically punished, even as you fling curses at her yourself.)