Monday, September 4, 2017

The suffering artist I am not

I have had a rough summer. August was especially awful, because of personal reasons that I have no wish to put on the internet. Suffice it to say that I am glad to see September arrive.

Until today, I had not written a single word since the end of July. That was when my troubles started. I have many friends who are fellow writers and who can bury themselves in their work to cope with their pain.

I am not such a person.

I retreat inward. My characters exit stage left and remain silent. I think much of being a writer is having a way to bring your internal world out. Retreating into yourself runs counter to that. In my grandiose moments when I imagine myself to be the next Hemingway in the making, I think all  I need is a cabin in the woods, a bottle of whiskey, my demons, and a great American masterpiece is sure to follow, right?

Sadly, that's just not how I operate. I will never be the artist who must suffer for my work. Life, inevitably, will bring along with it some very painful moments. I find myself unable to write to my pain.

I suppose that means I must, instead, write to my joy.