Aloha kaua e,
I loved the idea and decided to take up her challenge immediately, for no secret to anyone, I love to write. I can crank out the written word in volumes. However what could I tell you about my love affair with writing that you don’t already know? I had to think about that for a while.
The answer came to me as I took advantage of the President’s Day holiday this past Monday to do some cleaning. Here is a picture of the best housekeeper’s helper I have:
In the course of cleaning off our dining room table, I picked up an old journal I’d been leafing through the past few evenings, nonchalantly ripped off the covers, and started to feed a few pages at a time through my voracious, eager to help me, Fellowes shredder.
My husband was sitting at the table with his coffee and the morning paper, and was horrified: He’d snuck a couple of looks into my journal too as it had lain there invitingly out in the open, and he couldn’t believe his eyes, asking me “What are you doing?” for surely it wasn’t a careless mistake: I knew those covers I’d ripped off well, and he’d seen that journal lots of times.
…He’d seen it when I’d carry it wherever I went,
…He’d seen when I purposely left out a rant or an adoration I wanted him or my kids to read,
…He’d seen it when I used it as an excuse to buy more post-it flags in new colors I didn’t really need.
…He’d looked over and seen it in my hands when he caught me laughing to myself, or tearing up over something that bothered me, not caring in the least that my tears were getting the writing all smeared up.
…He’d seen it when he knew I was up against some deadline with Ho‘ohana Publishing, because once again, I just had it clutched to my middle with my eyes closed, expecting inspiration to come out of its pages and straight into my gut.
My answer for him was pretty matter-of-fact: “I don’t need it anymore, I can write more.”
It may take me a while to let go of things (that now-shredded journal was a few years old), and I am nowhere near as irreverent as this picture…
Ode to Jack Kerouac found on Flickr by Olivander.
…however when I’m done with something I have written, I am truly done with it. There is this feeling of completeness that happens when the jaws of my shredder become part of the process. The writing has been terrific: It did what it was supposed to do for me. And yes, I loved it.
I think that is what my love affair with writing is really all about. It’s the love affair with the act of writing, and not with what I may have written. I write, and I am in love with writing, because writing helps me think, reason, and decide. It helps me make sense of things, and bring them to more clarity. Once I do, I can get on with life and move on to the next thing I’d like to think about, reason through, and decide upon or even better, create.
I write to capture things, but only until I can use them in some way. I do write in frustration or anger sometimes, allowing myself the peaceful okay-ness of being an imperfect human being, and that is when I love my shredder most, for those are certainly words that I don’t want left around for anyone else to see. I don’t want to see them again either, for they are just emotion spilling to make room inside for better thoughts, and my shredder helps me remember that there is a whole lot more in life that deserves my attention instead.
Why do you love writing?
Joanna is offering a prize; a book to strengthen or inspire a lifelong love affair with writing. It is one I already have and highly recommend, so think about writing on your love affair for Joanna too… I take myself out of the prize running and I shall be rooting for you :)
Postscript: More on Jack Kerouac here if you are wondering… Beat generation on Wikipedia.
An Archive Romp through more on Writing: Take 5?
- My Mana‘o on Why I Write.
- Sunday Mālama: Morning Pages, Artist Dates and Rhythm (on MWA Coaching).
- Writing is a Skill the Successful Master (on MWA.com)
- Learn from the Master: Blog for 1 Person (on Joyful Jubilant Learning)
- What I Learned From Writing Online: It DOES make a difference (on Joyful Jubilant Learning)