Writing transforms the writer. Those who try to write do so at great peril and even perhaps severe loss. Each fills in their own examples of “peril” or definitions of “loss”. Writing has costs associated with the endeavor. It always has for me.
By analogy, I enjoy community and college theatre. If the company of players can get me into a seat and help me to transform creaky props and a good story into a romp of my imagination I feel such kindredness with them. I want others to feel that when I write. I try to accomplish a story that will do the same for the reader as the actors did for me. Change the imaginary whilst in the ordinary world through words.
I have been changed over the long hours at the keyboard or on the typewriter by the process I do to make a story (writing). I must renew my relationship with the narrative right up to where I left off work because I am romping through my imagination. That, for me, takes a practical process. I think writers figure out their process that uses builds with the nuts and bolts of the story becoming a relatable coherent progression—beginning to end. The challenges are near. Fatigue and frustration hit first.
Even though I have typed “imagination”, “story”, and hinted at the mental/brain orienting goal of story, this writing activity is real. There is real pain, also joy, exhilaration, and horrors to encounter as I go along.
I can leave a piece on a jump-drive, sequestered to a notebook, or I leave it at a bus stop. It will not be a story until I finish it. Until it transforms me. And we finally become one. This is working through the frustration and fatigue, the joy, anything that might de-rail the writing. No matter my critics or my self-doubt I write until I think I might perish. Of course, I know, mainly, I will not die.
I am reminded that chocolate-chip cookie batter looks horrid in the bowl. When baked and golden brown with melty chips it was worth the process. It was also ignoring myself saying, “This is a hot mess.”
There is no story until I finish. It may not be what an editor wants. The critic may have myriad reasons to hang it out to dry.
It is still a story because someone wrote it.
What? You thought you were going to get rich?
To do that do something else and take a direct approach to wealth.
I want to write. I cannot do otherwise.
I want the feeling of kindredness, the infatuation with the story, the processes of writing, of making strung-together words in a similar way as I will mix up a batch of self-made cookies.
Because I made them.