She sat staring at the pen. Willing it to come to life. Sometimes she felt more at ease with the pen, than the keyboard. The rhythm was more fluid, more organic. The weight of it was a comfort in her hand. The cursive flow of words on the page was a hopeless reminder that there was life in the string of letters.
Yet here she sat, no words, no life.
The frustration was not that there were no words. No characters. No plot. No genre. The frustration was that there were so many. The voices in her head were clambering on top of one another, trying to be heard. The din was ear piercing at times. She could see each one, each voice. They were defined as a person, animated, vocal and passionate. Each voice wanted their story to be heard. Each voice wanted to be heard right now.
She clasped her head with her hands. She closed her eyes. She tried to focus on her breathing. Deep, long breaths her husband said that morning. The quiet will come, just focus on your breathing.
Without the quiet, she could not write.
Then she remembered the story of the birds. Bird by bird. The small book sat on her bedside table. For the past few nights it has been the solace at the end of her long days. In hopeless gratitude she picked it up each night and read another chapter. Her soul relinquished to the absolute honesty of what she read. It is within those pages that she felt Anne Lamott spoke only to her. It is within those pages that she discovered the one inch photo frame.
With her pen now in her hand, she remembered the one inch photo frame. The clamber of voices, the heavy weight of their stories eased as she looked through her one inch photo frame. This tiny window into her words was the perspective she needed. This was the perspective that allowed her to focus.
Now she could write. The words flowed with more ease. In the quiet she could define her characters. Unravel her plot. Define her genre. In the quiet she found the light.
While we all may not be writers and we all may not have a din of voices, chaotic and rowdy in our minds. We all sometimes need to shift our perspective. For sometimes it can be our saving grace. Try not to get hung up on the labels, the genres or the pigeon holes. Instead, try and look at the world through a one inch photo frame.
Have you ever looked at life through a one inch photo frame?
Secret Subject Swap is a once a month post that links the talents of Emily, Melissa, Jodi, JC, Becky, Rhianna, Ashley, Zanni and me. The topic this month was sent to me by Becky: My topic for you is “genre”. What is your favorite genre to write? Are there other genres you have written? What genres have you never tried but would like to? Are there any genres you think would be difficult for you to write? What genre is your current writing project in? These are just examples of questions you can address. Choose to answer all or none of them if you like; anything about “genre” is fine.
Please stop by and visit all the fabulous writers who are part of this link-up x