Updated: Jun 11, 2021
A dozen stories started, a few finished, a couple out in the world. She had to admit, she had done a lot.
But as she opened the documents one after the other, her mind was empty of words. Not of ideas, never of ideas. Only of words. She knew in what direction the stories should go. In this one a kiss, in that a fight, in this other the end of all things happy and nice. But the words wouldn’t come.
She tried and tried, forcing her way through, writing paragraphs only to delete them.
The ideas were there but the words weren’t good.
And so once more, she opened a blank page. Most of the people she knew were paralysed by fear whenever they saw one, but to her it was freeing. She got the chance, no, the honor, of discovering something new every time. Her thoughts, her hopes, her feelings, her ideas, this was how she got them into place. With a blank page and the gentle tapping sounds of her nails on a membrane keyboard.
The emptiness was her world. One she could fill, at will, at a whim, with whatever her creative mind could conjure that day. Dragons and unicorns, zombies and vampires, electric trees and candlelight.
On a blank page she could craft. She could create. She could design worlds and destroy them. She could bring life. Fictional life perhaps, but life nonetheless.
Her thoughts condensed on that last sentence. Was this it? Was this the reason she was doing all this? All those stories, those worlds, those characters, to compensate for her terror of creating real world life?
Her head spun. This couldn’t be all of it.
She was bringing more than that to this world. Wasn’t she?
She thought of all the reviews she never got. All the feedback she hadn’t received. She was writing stories, yes, but for whom? Very few people read them.
Ah, but there it was. Of those who read them, not one had ever disliked any of her stories, no matter how unbelievable, no matter how fantastical. She did bring something, then. Smiles perhaps. Chills at times. A sense of unity, of belonging, of… life.
Damn it we were back to that.
Okay, she reflected. But what does life mean here?
It’s not just about babies. Or children. It’s about being.
Through her stories she made people feel alive, for only a few minutes, a few hours, but that feeling lasted forever. She gave so much of herself in her craft. Her lifeforce, in a way. This might be it.
Her writing was the thin line she held on to, to not fall away from reality. She was alive. So very much alive. So much in fact that at times she wondered if anyone else was. And this, this was what she wanted to bring to others. That sense of existing completely, thoroughly, of being here, now, in this place or that one, without a question or a doubt, of simply… living.
Her mind was way too fast for her hands to keep up, but she could fill in the gaps later. It didn’t matter. She had figured something out. Something so important, so deep, that her head was spinning.
Breathe, she reminded herself. Sometimes she forgot, so busy was she being in the moment. Breathe, you’re here. You’re writing. You’re alive.
She couldn’t take her eyes off the laptop. This page was almost full already, but there was so much more to say. She’d have to spill over, again.
Another blank page.
It cleared her mind a little, reduced the buzzing of her thoughts. There were few things more soothing to her than the sight of a blank, empty page. But she had to keep writing.
Where was she? Ah, yes. Life. Being. Writing, and sharing.
That was the word she had been looking for. Sharing. For what is a story if not a person sharing their mind with whoever reads it? What is a book but a receptacle for mind beads left for others to play with?
She shared all of herself in her words, filling line after line with digital ink and a metaphorical quill running on virtual paper. And with each word, with each drop she was more alive. As if writing made her real, tangible. As if she didn’t really exist until she could share.
So she shared, what else was there to do? She shared her fears of not being good enough. Not being able to create a life that wouldn’t be made of sentences. Not being the badass cool dragon her friends insisted she was.
But there was more than fear.
There was pride. She had two books out. Two comics. More on the way. She had stories aplenty, available to anyone who wanted to read them. She even had art in other forms. She had made all of that. By herself. In three years. She had created a lifeline for some, wonders for others, metaphors and explanations, a mirror for those who couldn’t find any.
There was humility. She had worked with amazing people from all walks of life, had witnessed their struggles and their accomplishments, had participated in the start of careers that would, she was sure, lead to success.
There was admiration. For the hard working folks she had the privilege to call her friends. For the dedication of some, the productivity of others, the creativity of all.
There was love.
So much love.
Love for the writers and the readers, for the simps and the haters, for the people and the monsters. Love for the words and their structure, for the ebb and the flow of this ocean she wasn’t quite drowning in. Love for her craft. For all her creations. For her writing self.
And as she wrote and filled yet another page with ramblings, she came to realise that all in all, she was probably in love with the world, and that was who she wrote for.
That was also what she wrote about. The world. The chaos, the rules, the absurd beauty, the terrible cruelty, the randomness of it all. Love, after all, is unconditional.
She was getting close to the end of another writing session, almost at the end of another page. And her mind was empty, and her heart was full. Of what, she wasn't sure. But she was grateful for the chance to write these words, and for all the future blank pages of her life.
She was looking forward to filling them all.