Monday, September 28, 2009

Where do you do your dreaming?

Hi friends...well today was a classic evade-your-writing-responsibilities Monday. I got so wrapped up in trying to change the appearance of my blog--going so far as to create pages on another blogging server (which took two hours), only to give up. And yes, I do have a mild case of OCD. Needless to say, the blog is now back to its original design--I'm hoping to get better at this web design stuff, but we'll see if that actually happens.

Since I didn't get much writing done today, I wanted to share another blog with you to make up for the fact that I didn't write (thereby giving you something else to read). Just look for love in it is my friend Lauren's new blog and she's already putting forth lots of great thoughts, not to mention cute pictures of the men in her life (her husband and her dog). Lauren is one of those friends you call when you need advice or a reminder that things aren't so bad, so as you can imagine her blog is just what we all need right now...

This weekend I got to thinking about the places we writers write. I've known some who sit down in an open field with a battered old journal and start scrawling their thoughts down in a yellow #2 pencil. Others go vintage with an old typewriter--I've heard the rhythm of the keys can be hypnotic. Some can write anywhere and on anything, a cocktail napkin or a cardboard box. Others are productive only at their desks. I'm one of the desk people. I tend to think about the first few sentences in my head, and once I've got too many to remember without writing down, I run for my desk and start typing. I once read a quote from a songwriter who said that, for her, songwriting wasn't voluntary, but involuntary, so that when she was writing her songs it was more like she was downloading something that was already there as opposed to simply thinking things up. On my good days, that's what it feels like for me.

But for a writer, the place we write is the place we do our dreaming and our dreading. It's where we imagine a great romance, a deep and enduring loss, and the series of character flaws that lead to a world's unraveling. For me, dreaming has always been a twenty-sided coin: I imagine good things, bad things, frightening things, the worst things possible, sometimes redemption, sometimes failure without end.

So where do you do your dreaming?

Pictured above is one of my many bizarre idea sheets. Observe the weirdness therein: "Dr. Phil"???? Just goes to show, a great story can start with absolutely anything...

In that spirit, tomorrow I'm posting some writing, no matter how bad it is...I PROMISE.

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