Posts I want to write keep backing up in my mind, and eventually the ideas grow stale and I forget about them.
Yikes. There's a moral here.
I am feeling a bit more energy (although I am finding that naps are still rather wonderful things), so hopefully I will write some of these posts. And also other things.
For instance, I want to submit to this. But I'm not sure what to submit. The two stories I love most are not ready; the third is very short, possibly too short to qualify. Well, I have more than a month before the deadline. I should work on one of my darlings.
I am sorry to say that one of my roadblocks is that all my stories are on the my huge, heavy laptop that I don't use much anymore because it has a broken hinge and can't close and also something is wrong with the fan and it always sounds like the computer is about to lift off. This is a pathetic reason not to write. I am trying to push past the various forms of pathetic that are holding me back. Exhaustion is a legitimate reason; choosing to use your unexhausted moments to watch Game of Thrones is not.
Fact is, it is time for me to write again. And it is going to hurt. Oh yes. (Think training for a marathon when you've been sitting on a couch for the past year.) But it is time, more than time.
I didn't get in to this program--heck, if I had, I would have been terrified--and anyways, I didn't expect to. But applying to it meant something. It was a step, a movement. And then Greg Wolfe sent me a personal message, which was awesome. (I'm sure he sent one to people other than me, but I know for a fact that he didn't send one to everybody.)
Shortly thereafter, I had an all-too-rare phone conversation with my cousin, and confessed to him I hadn't done much writing since graduating. He was quite disappointed in me. Rosemary, he said, you should be writing. Don't lose it.
I know. I know that I should be writing. I know I could lose it. It terrifies me.
Almost immediately afterward I got an email from an author who I'd met online via the Catholic Writer's Guild. He had read a story of mine ("Dust") for a workshop, and months later emailed to congratulate me when it was published. He remembered me and my story and pointed me in so many helpful directions--links to contests I should enter, an offer to read my work, an invitation to approach his own publisher when I had a collection of short stories ready for publication. I was so touched!
And also so embarrassed to admit I hadn't been writing lately.
It has been made particularly clear to me that the time has come. I think what terrifies me most about this is that I had started to think about my writing as something that it didn't matter too much if I just sort of let it go. Would I be sad about it and regret it later on? Probably. But really, it's not like my stories are going to change the world. In the big picture it doesn't matter. Right?
Except it does. It isn't the same as if I gave up knitting, say, or decided to give up training for a marathon because it was too hard or I just wasn't into it anymore. For who I am and who I'm called to be, it matters. It is part of reality in such a way that to walk away (and especially to let it slip away through laziness and fear) would be a loss for me--spiritually and personally. It would be more than just a personal regret. Not because my stories are going to change the world or are somehow necessary to Catholic Literature or whatever, but because I would not be fulfilling God's plan for my life, and that ripples outward. When we neglect our own growth, we can never know what might have been, both for ourselves and those whose lives we touch.
I've realized, also, that my desire for a less haphazard prayer life and a return to writing are so, so very similar. They both need discipline. I am not a disciplined person. I function according to deadlines, which I no longer have imposed on me from outside, so I just sort of do things as they come to me. Right now at least, this doesn't matter too much for things like housework (although even there I've started finding that rhythm and routine is important). But for craft--oh does it matter!
I need order. It is hard to know where to start.