|picture found here|
Growing up, I longed to live north of Texas where I would be able to enjoy snow and snow days. Now, I would give anything to live south of Oklahoma where I would be safe from snow and snow days (for the most part). It's funny how perspectives change.
I am ready for the snow and ice to melt. I am ready to drive without fear. I am ready to return to my everyday life of work. I am ready for highs in the 50s and lows only in the 30s.
Still, this week of being snowed in has been nice. I've spent time watching television and listening to good music. I've worked on my novel and fallen in love with the idea of (one day) working from home as a novelist. I thought I would be bored and ready to leave the house by now, but honestly, I am content to read and write and simply enjoy the confines of my home.
I've had no other responsibilities or distractions this week. All church events were cancelled. The potential law student orientation (and practice LSAT) I planned to attend was cancelled also. I don't remember the last time I went a week without responsibilities while at home.
All of this has provided me the chance to write. To be honest, it has been years since I wrote so much consecutively. It's also the first time I have written so much without an agenda. In the past, I had classes to write for and grades to receive. Or several people to send the in progress work to and await feedback. But now I am writing for no other audience but myself. It is both liberating and terrifying.
I'm liberated because I am able to write for myself and only myself. I'm not trying to fit my words into a specific genre or to please any one person (or number of people). My writing is not dependent on how many emails I receive with thoughts. When I come to a place and find myself stuck and unsure of how to proceed, I depend on only myself instead of asking someone else to guide me.
The terror comes from the not knowing. I don't know what others will think. I can't tell if this story will speak to anyone else. Sometimes I wonder if I am wasting my time with writing, and then I remind myself that writing is never a waste of time. This novel of mine might not be published, but at least I will finish it knowing I wrote it for myself and only myself.
And the terror also comes from just how much this story means to me. Stories I've written in the past have held pieces of me, but for the most part, the stories have been only the characters. This time, though, I find myself bleeding on the pages and truly sharing my heart. It's a story of loss and change and of love. It talks about the things that change us and the things that don't. As I write, I remember my senior year of college. It was the year after months spent in China and a year of change and loss and of love. It was a year that changed me forever and will always remain with me.
Bleeding onto the pages might not be for the best. It might make rejection harder to handle. But it feels right to me. This is a story that has bounced around my head for years, and I've attempted to write it once. I even completed it once. Then I decided there was more to say, and I am in the process of re-telling the story. The characters are different, which is for the best.
As I write, other ideas come to me. I am anxious to finish this story and move onto the next. I am excited for what the future of my writing will hold.
(title from "breathe" by taylor swift)