Inspiration that keeps on inspiring Rev

picture of a blank book and a pen

23, insecure and eager, sitting in a mid-to-back desk, among my fellow nobody collective in the walled-in confines–I awaited the impending demands of my new Non-Fiction/Journalism professor. From the moment he opened his mouth, I found myself in awe of his deep-thunderous baritone voice, not unlike South Park’s Chef. “Raise your hand if you are a writer, words crisp, hanging in the air like thick willowy branches rooting into every corner of the classroom–eliminating any chance of escape.  None of us–regardless of specialization: creative writing, journalism, or analytical writing–dare to raise a finger or even dare to fucking look him in the eyes. Hell, I was trying to drill a hole through my desk with my laser, don’t look at me, eyes.

With his loud booming, ‘Ye shall I walk through the valley of death,’ voice, my psyche loathe a verbal castration for my gross incompetence.

Our class was silent enough to hear a fly shit, but that wasn’t going to happen because no one–absolutely NO ONE–wanted to drag attention to himself. “Are you a writer,” the silence was butter as he cut it right in half, doubling the intense deafening roar. Unaware of my own actions, I found my eyes looking at his (much to my own chagrin). His eyes were all Eye of Sauron roving the room–That staring! That Perpetual Staring!

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Words rolled through the classroom again as he said the most inconceivable notion, “You are all writers!”

If he wanted to see if we would shit ourselves in the middle of the class, he was on the right path. He was damned well going to get a payload for his hard work. Was this a sick haze to ease us into complacency and then the next moment was he planning to rip into us like sweet caviar? Confusion, happiness, fear, questions about how many steps to the door: all these thoughts rushing through my mind…

“You all write things, and you all care about the content, or else you wouldn’t be here. You are all writers and until you accept that and claim that ownership of your identity, you will never be the best writer that you can be.”

Trembling subsiding slowly, I felt unimaginable happiness as the endorphins kicked in. We went from a horror film to silent film back to horror film to the Rocky Horror Picture party scene as Meatloaf walks in.

This memory plays so vividly to me, today, as I try once again to become a ‘writer.’

A Change of Pace

I took this blog as a project to develop skills for the business world more-so than for personal development. I think there’s nothing wrong with that, but in doing so I didn’t provide myself with much of an outlet to alleviate any of the stress that I accrued from working, studying and rinse-repeat cycles weeks-in-and-weeks-out. I’m rather hard on myself in terms of studying when I set my mind to it. I’m well aware of that. I spent 9 months studying Chinese daily for 40+ hours of writing in a coffee shop each week and that’s not counting the 10 hours a week that I met with a one-on-one instructor to teach me in a study room setting.

Some people after reading that will skip to the point of asking, “Well what was the result?” Or perhaps will think, “Wow, I wish I could do that! You must be really fluent then!” It’s unfortunate, though, because while movies work in montages like Rocky or Family Guy/Simpson stylized buildups, life doesn’t work that way. It’s a sacrifice and to be honest it’s really unfair to the self. I am not really proud about that decision to study like that. I think there’s much more that I could have done in that time then trying to cheapen the learning experience.

To the non-linguistic enthusiast, my last paragraph might seem paradoxical at best, and perhaps idiotic at worst, or perhaps you can come up with something worse… I’ll leave that to your imagination if you so choose. But what I want to say is that language is about communication. If it’s not being used as such, it defeats the purpose. Life, in very much the same vein, it meant to be lived, not spent thinking about how you will do it after you’ve crammed for nearly a year on end. There’s no reason that you can’t study hard and allow for a little bit of time for the other things that are also as important.

If you are still with me on this, then you might be aware of where I’m getting with this. I have made mistakes about how much I soak my time into my endeavors to the exclusion of everything else. I, at times, have prided myself on that, thinking it was a luxury of enthusiasts to become so focused; while balanced it is an exceptionally useful determinism, but defeats the purpose of personal growth when done to excess.

 

Off the path of social coding into the venue of writing and the interpersonalization of our writer’s Id

Just now, well a moment ago, I was enjoying a well-thought out post on K E Garland‘s page and one of her discussions with tunisiajolyn84 really struck me. Forgive me if reposting it here is not cool. If so just let me know and I’ll take it down. 

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I want to say thank you for the salient points and I’d humbly like to add a quote, albeit a long one, from one of my favorite writing coaches, John Flowerdew:

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My words can’t do his written work justice. I just want to say that it resonates with me–this idea that inside each and every one of us exists the Writer’s self, which I like to call the Writer’s Id. It is often neglected and downtrodden, so much so that people dread their written word being read more than they do fear being hit by a car. The profundity of something so off-kilter in a species of animal that prides itself, first and foremost, on its ability to communicate.

It’s like 50 shades of Writer’s Block without the sexuality. It’s domineering with a threat of violence at any predilection that Writer’s Id appears to be improper or unlikely to win the recognition of the READER. But how… without giving it patience; without giving it Love.

To Love mustn’t we give in to loving ourselves before truly and fully feeling that for others? Can it not be said for our Writer’s Id as well? How can Writer’s Id ever truly love and be loved by the muses without first giving in to that lovers embrace of the self and allowing all the messy bits to come out like tears that burst out at the seams at the first good cathartic sobbing. Isn’t it worth it?