Wednesday, October 03, 2012

"-and it will be alright," he said.

The blank page doesn't frighten me, has not done so for some time. It still doesn't. A blank pages is an invitation to make a mistake, a mess, a miracle. The blank page that breathless pause before the Big Bang and the universe begins.

What gives me pause it what comes after, when there are already words on the page and you have found something that may possibly be a flow, or a ghost, but it is enough of something for you to follow, and your thoughts have brought you this far, to a point at which you realise there is no point and you do not know what you are trying to say.

Blogging used to be such an effective weapon against myself, or the world, or myself. The act of structuring a post in my mind imposed a structure upon a struggle that in its very nature is without definition. An artificial and arbitary imprisonment, but one that gave me some measure of peace regardless. The composition of that post was a natural extension, requiring a further narrowing of focus and definition. The precision of a word was like the puncture of a pin through the hull of a moth, the 'preeeee-' that first prick and pressure before the point breaks the surface and the 'cish' the spearing and parting of organs and secrets as the shaft slides down, and finally the 'on' of the point thrust down into the board. That moth will not fly again.

You can only find such precision when you know your own voice. Second person to speak of the first. I. I do not entirely know this I. I, you, she, this entity, stopped blogging, stopped writing. She begin finding stories in photography, although even these she did not share with abandon. I spoke more, out loud I mean. More for me. People who encountered me still found me recalcitrant, but I knew the difference. Maybe I had nothing to say. Perhaps I didn't want to say anything. What I consider my true voice was left unused. It starved, warped, and eventually became nothing.

There have been, are still, so many hurtles between myself and the act of writing. The physical ones are lesser than they were, although this is due to a change of life circumstances and employment, not any radical healing on my part. I must still be careful with the time I spend both typing and writing by hand. This will be lifelong I imagine. It is not a bad thing. The flat tends to get cleaned when I need to stop. Everyone wins?

On only my second day in town I joined the Glasgow Science Fiction Writers Group. It has been good not just to surround myself with writers once again, but to engage actively in writerly activities. I've dipped my toes into the water of freelance editing, but writing up a report differs vastly from engaging in a face to face discussion on the strength, weaknesses and possible progressions of a story. There are so many ways in which a tale can be read, and it is wonderful and refreshing to be reminded of that. The shared excitement. The giddiness that comes from being with people who care about narrative mechanics as much as you do. These are fine things.

And then there is gentle insistance of loved ones who recognise that this small thing is such an important thing, and although I am not afraid they will hold my hand without asking and believe in me when I am indifferent.

Writing is no longer something to be shied away from, neither the thought of it nor the action. Be proud of me? Tessa, these shifts may be slight but they take such time and exertion, like the push of continental plates. There will always be destruction with change. You cannot see the time lost and strings severed without acknowledging the shift. One does not happen without the other.

Start small and long. A flash fiction competition with months in which to contemplate your inability to produce neat short ideas. Which is actually really fucking frustrating.

I've been gnawing tentatively at the idea of doing another 7wishes type project, which would additionally force me to write some joy into Glasgow. The city and I have had a rocky start, not helped by the fact that I think we just have conflicting personalities. I don't know Glasgow as well as Melbourne, not nearly. Nor do I know myself as well as I did.

I was thinking about that, and this voice, and what has changed. For example; my lover. My normal policy regarding blogging about other people is not to make them identifiable or overly specific in interaction unless that other person had an online presence of their own, somewhere they could return fire, so to speak. He does not. I also want to respect the privacy of others. What ever I share here I am okay with sharing, but I would not make that assumption for anyone else.

These are incidental however, solved by merely talking with him, and I do love talking with him. No, what gives me pause is the line between personal and precious. I cannot blog about my life and excise him from it. To do so would be to lie by omission and deny the incredible and integral part of my life he plays. I am no longer an identity in isolation, not to myself. Yet, because he is so precious I do not wish to share him. These times and glances and moments are treasures immeasurable. Perhaps you have been in love and been loved. Perhaps you do understand. But then, you must understand the greediness and selfishness that comes with delight.

These are lines I have not yet encountered in the sand, lines I suspect I will have to learn to walk as I learn what this different voice has to say.

1 comment:

  1. It looks like you have made small but important progress, Tessa. Good on ya. Wishing you all the best with it.