In every writer’s life there are times when “life” gets in the way. These are moments when crisis intervenes, family obligations take priority, and writing production takes a back seat. For writers on deadline this produces heightened stress. For writers who practice their craft daily, tension is heightened. For writers lost in their own worlds of fancy, turmoil increases.
What to do?
We do the best we can. At times the writing will suffer, the production will falter, and commitment will fail. But that doesn’t mean the writer is absent. In fact, the writer is even more present–to the world. The senses are heightened; we have switched from output to input. In the midst of whirling emotions, we remain at work noticing the increased fragility of those around us, the protracted dialogues, and the freshness of an old, familiar setting. Some call it grist for the mill. Others merely name it fodder.
Over the weekend I sifted through the past week of living. It’s difficult to watch your parents age. Feel the paradigm shift. Become the parent when once you were the child. Because I am a writer, my natural inclination is to seek out the experiences of others through reading, so I reached for the latest issue of The Belleview Review, a journal that publishes works that invoke life’s experiences with illness, health and healing. And of course, the writer in me responded by composing lines, invoking images, and searching for words, those tools that help me articulate my thoughts and feelings. For it’s in the writing where I find solace, where I come to terms with life, where I begin again to be who and what I am.