For the longest time, I have forgotten about when I began writing in the first place and more importantly why?
The why is simple it was and is a way of organising my thoughts in a manner that made sense I have never done it for anyone other than me. This is a selfish way of looking at things and there was always a part of me that thought, I cannot be alone in my thoughts and experiences. When I showed what I had written to those closest to me I realised that my style of writing resonated with others. More importantly what I was writing connected with them so what began with me writing for me I quickly realised that I was writing things for the enjoyment others of as well as the therapeutic side of it.
I first got inspired to write my more descriptive story-based stuff was when I was on a ship. For the longest time, I have loved story-based narratives that made you think starting with the movie The Usual Suspects. Then I discovered the work of Drew Karpyshan whose writing style I discovered through the video game Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, and the other books he had written. However, It was on my travels on that ship where I had very little to do and very few distractions that I discovered this beautiful movie starring Harvey Keitel - Shadows in the Sun. In this film, Mr Keitel’s character is a writer living in Italy not too far from where I am now. His character meets a young ambitious editor sent down there by a major publishing house to sign his character up for a book deal. His character was once a great writer who when we first meet him has lost his drive and desire to write. Mostly due to the death of his wife and someone who thinks he has no more stories to tell. His writer's block is seemingly incurable and he is happy to just live out the rest of his life in isolation, drinking and not doing much else with his life. Not living just existing whilst living in the safe bubble he has created for himself. Yet throughout this movie you see three love stories unfold as he rediscovers his love for painting with words, aided by the young editor and as he discovers his passion to write not just edit the work of others, through the tutelage of the at first extremely resistant Keitel…he also falls in love with the daughter of Keitel's character. Set in the rolling hills of Tuscany in the stunning Italian countryside with a whole host of loveable Italian characters. It’s a movie that inspires me to this day and was the inspiration behind my post “The Night I felt the Wrath of Poseidon”. I watched that movie multiple times during my three months on board that ship. It inspires me to this day so if you can find it please do watch it and let me know your thoughts.
When I look back now I realise that I too have experienced something very similar. Doing anything creative and putting oneself out there can be a struggle because we have to reopen ourselves up to all that we have experienced and all that life holds. In doing so we become vulnerable not just to the external forces in our life but to our own inner demons when at times it feels safer to stay hidden. To exist and not have to put ourselves in the firing line of criticism, rejection and the self-doubt that comes with them. We question whether or not we are able to produce what we once did, to the same level or even reach the next level. Hence why my writing has been so sporadic and infrequent lacking consistency.
But the other night I had the strangest dream where I was talking to someone about my love of writing, the sound of the keyboard as my words pour forth how it’s reminiscent it is of a master tap dancer like Gene Kelly plying their craft on a dance floor. The sound of typing has its own rhythm as you strike key after key creating this staccato beat as your thoughts are unleashed upon an unsuspecting page. Like rain falling on tree leaves each keystroke with its own unique sound, when put together is peaceful, rhythmic and joyful. That is the sound of a creative mind in perfect harmony with his tools and thoughts. It's a sound that resonates throughout the apartment and there is beauty to it. As the chaos of the mind becomes a symphony, tick-tack-click-clack-ra-ta-ta and on and on as each finger finds where it needs to be to bring about a new word, sentence or paragraph filling line after line. Creating words where before there was nothing but an empty page.
There is a joy to writing, some people need mind maps to start writing to organise their thoughts. This is a much more disciplined approach and one that we get taught at school and many people use to put their thoughts into a cohesive structure. This isn’t how I like to write, I tend to say a sentence in my head which typically ends up being the title then I let it all flow from there. But that is just me I sit at my desk and put on some Ludovico Einaudi or whatever music I am feeling at the time. Then just take one deep breath, close my eyes and feel the words come to my fingers and I start typing. Being careful to never overthink it that part comes later when read over what I have just written. With Grammarly running in the background I know that I don’t have to think about my grammar too much and type as I think.
I think I will wrap this entry up here it’s felt good to return to my keyboard again and share these thoughts with you on the “Joy of Writing” and I hope to share more with you in the future. Till then thank you for getting this far and please stay tuned for my next entry.