For me, the hardest part of writing has always been coming up with a way to start. I generally know where I want to go -- which witty little anecdotes I'll throw in along the way to keep the journey lively and what my big close will look like. I've always been proud of my writing; invigorated by the way the words just seem to wrap themselves around each other, painting a picture. Whether or not the reader sees the same picture remains blurry and vague and somewhat inconsequential. It's been a long time since I had a paper returned to me, marked up with suggestions for improved clarity and punctuation. My (appropriate) use of punctuation is abysmal. I tend to write the way I speak and I'm never quite sure if I just said a comma or if that was just a breath so I could keep going.

I write, in general, for me.

And yet? I still struggle with where to start. Which is what I'm doing right now. Waiting for some bright epiphany to pop free from this (edited) stream of consciousness. I envy (?) admire those writers who can sit down and let their thought flow unedited from brain to keyboard. I've tried that a time or seven. Instead of lyrical, breathing rhythms, I stutter and stop. My flow is too viscous. Thick with extraneous bits and pieces that don't really belong but got stuck in the mix. Gloppy.

In one of my eleventy billion drafts I wrote:

I wish I could take you on a tour through the inner workings of my mind. I wish I could take a tour through the inner workings of my mind. I'm not really sure what exactly goes on in there, but we would all need ear protection and there would be absolutely no way anyone could board the tram without signing a waiver re: injuries due to not keeping hands and feet safely inside the tram at all times. There would also need to be something about "participating at your own risk. Management does not assume responsibility for any lingering emotional or psychological trauma blah blah blah".

I like the way that feels. I like the way it starts, hesitantly, then starts again, a fun-town train pulling into the station and heading off again, pointing out the main attractions as it chugs along. Chug-chug-chug-chug-chug. Chug-chug-chug-chug-chug. Chug-chug-chug-chug, chug-chug-chug-chug, chug-chug-chug-chug, WOOO-WOOOO. I feel strong, proud, exhilarated when I read it. I can taste the salty popcorn air. I can hear the whir of the Ferris wheel just getting ready to start up. Draped in bold, albeit, frighteningly dark colors, it comes alive to me. I created it. I just don't know what to do with it.

So it sits in my draft folder, waiting for something to come along and make it whole.

That's where I sit today. Waiting for something to come along and make me whole. Waiting for a good way to start.

I'll go back to therapy a week from Wednesday. Maybe we'll talk again about medication, though that scares the living bejeebus out of me. Too many horror stories about what can go wrong if you get hooked up with the wrong chemical combo and quite frankly, I'm not sure I have the time or energy to be patient enough to look for the right one. Then again, maybe I'm so completely average that anything will do up to and including a better multi-vitamin. Right now I'm going to grab my iPod and go for a walk. Vitamin D is good for the psyche, right? Turn the music up just loud enough that I'm forced to sing along. Wear my sunglasses so that I can pretend not to notice the sideways glances that are probably all in my head anyways.


No comments: