Yeah, you can tell by the blog post heading I’m a bit hungover on Easter mimosas, chocolate bunnies, family fun, and my current deadline staring me dead in the face.
I’m hoping I haven’t lost you yet so here we go.
As my boys grow older, I’m reaching the time when they will officially say good-bye to all the imaginary, enchanted things in childhood such as the Easter Bunny, Santa, and the Tooth Fairy. I’m already grieving as a mother, but I’ve been thinking of this loss of magic in other ways.
What happens when we begin to lose our sense of childhood mysticism?
It’s a sad passing. Part of life, yes, but I’ve been mulling over how we are able to still keep a bit of this exciting, larger-than-life appreciation for things we cannot actually SEE but believe. I’m not talking about religion, either.
I’m talking about finding the divine in the everyday muck.
Writing does that for me. It allows me to take situations that normally would either depress me, or restrict my imagination, and transform them into a story. A story where I get to direct the ending. I can blow things up, watch my characters suffer, or give them a happy ever after. I can take each tragic, heartbreaking loss and examine it in minute detail for the sole purpose of understanding a character’s motivation or actions. I can write a better ending than I may find right here, in my own life.
This is a power that’s often overlooked. I also think it’s a way I cling to that beautiful childhood magic that slowly disintegrates in the midst of junior high, fitting in, finding yourself, and trying to hold on till you get to the next better place, whether that be college, or even later. Hell, some people are still hoping they find it in their sixties. And that is sheer fortitude and stubbornness I admire. Never giving up.
Sometimes, writing every day becomes a job that’s hard and boring and uninspiring. It’s good to step back sometimes and re-discover some magic, whether it’s in nature, or childhood memories, or a captivating book. Sometimes, when I read my old journals and remember how far I’ve come, or even a time in my life when I was completely inspired, it gives me motivation to try something new, or look at things differently. Check out an old art project you once thought was damn good. Read one of your old diaries. Peruse through a yearbook, or read an older story you once wrote in a fit of mad passion.
We discover things in our writing, but sometimes we need to get out of our mundane routines to find new things. To re-connect with the person we once were—the one who believed in magical Easter bunnies who hide eggs and give you chocolate, or even the person who trusted justice would always be served like Atticus Finch proved, or that good will always overcome bad because there really are superheroes and the Justice League out there.
Let music or words or the view out your window seep into your soul a bit, and try to remember what it was like being that person. I think it’s important for the writing, and remembering who you once were and believed in.
I’ve been getting a lot of mail on my book, Write Naked. I wanted to thank all the readers and writers out there who took the time to tell me how the book has helped them -it really means so much to me. I wrote that book so writers out there wouldn’t feel so alone, or so crazy, or so scared. Each tweet or Facebook post or email is read and appreciated. And I pretty much fall to my knees in gratitude for any reviews – good or bad.
The fun news? I created the official Write Naked t-shirt for all the readers who asked and it’s now available for order right here:
So, go out and believe in magical bunnies and beautiful words that make a difference.
Get naked and get writing.