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Thursday, May 20, 2010

State of Mind

A couple of days ago, I posted that I'd finished the novel on Facebook. I received some nice 'waytogo's', including one from my husband who commented that 'writing was a lifestyle'. He would look at it that way. Bless his generous heart, he supports me and lets me indulge this obsession. From his point of view, writing is how I arrange my life.

That's true and not true. I don't see writing as a lifestyle, particularly. I see it as a perpetual state of mind. Because he doesn't live in my head, he has no idea of how obsessed I really am.

When I'm not actively writing, I'm thinking about the plot in nearly every waking moment unless I happen to be doing something else that demands my immediate attention. I even dream plot. I often wake up thinking about the book - it's the first thing on my mind, and thank God that it is; the things that go through my head in the morning are how I might make the story better, where I didn't explain enough, or where the logic doesn't make sense. I often wake up fully present, because my mind has been working while I sleep.

A friend once said that writing is a 'solitary art'. I suppose it is, but I never feel alone when I write. When I'm actively working, I have my characters for company. I'm never bored. I'm never lonely. The worst thing that can come from a day spent at the laptop is a sore back. The world in my head is more diverting than the one I live - so much so, that I'm glad to leave the computer and do something else after a day of it - like walk the dogs, or talk to the kids, garden, or dance. My outer life is a relief from the intensity of my inner one.

I think most writers exist this way. We're 'tip of the iceberg' people. What you see on the surface does not reflect where we live.

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