You messaged me all the way from the islands tonight and the least I could do was plunk myself down in front of this little screen and start tapping these small white keys.
What to do about writer’s block? Beats me. I’ve heard the advice is to write even when you don’t feel like writing. Just write anyway. The experts say to make time to write everyday. They say don’t wait for “the magic.”
Oh but once you’ve written with magic in your fingertips and the muse at your shoulder it is oh-so-hard to write any other way. I live for that magic, for the breath of forest air that my muse sweeps in with, for the pure clean thrill of writing my un-swept heart out onto the screen.
But lately the magic comes less often and sometimes I feel the urge to write but I don’t know what to say. So many times I know I need to let my soul bleed onto pages but the skin, where it hurts, puckers up tight and does not release it’s pain or glory for others to see.
Or maybe, maybe, I am afraid to try. Afraid that what I write without “the magic” with me will be mediocre, boring, a waste of time. Afraid that others will tire of hearing my words if the magic doesn’t bless me with it’s extra dose of creativity and inspiration.
We are always afraid, aren’t we?
But tonight, because of you, my black-haired goddess of a friend, I will tell you this one truth.
(wait for it, it has not revealed itself yet . . . . . .)
Oh, okay. THIS one truth: that today you should write, but not the story of your heart. Just write a few simple things. Write about the way you saw the waves lap the shore as the long-legged birds fished in the shimmering light of early evening. Share with me the smile you saw on your daughter’s face and how it made you angry and sad and victorious and exultant all at once. Write about the beans you cooked for dinner and how very tired you are of eating beans and cooking beans and of cooking at all for that matter.
And if, in sharing some small detail of your day with the bright screen in front of you, if some small detail of your heart does not fall out and wink back at you from the words you commit to the page, well, I will be surprised.
Because, it turns out, we’re all heart and all magic. It’s impossible to have writer’s block. It just might simply be that the words we want to write aren’t ready to be written. That maybe we have to give other words a chance first. Maybe our heart is asking us to trust it when it doesn’t reveal it’s secrets quite yet. Maybe, your own inner muse, your inner magic, knows that the keys themselves hold a little therapy, if only you will trust them.
So today, I dare you. Write a sentence. Two, three, four. One small paragraph that’s all. Let some sacred moment of beauty in your ordinary mundane, light you up, and share that moment’s secrets through the fast fly of your fingers on keys.
And just like that.
The magic is back.