How Does It Dream To You Now?

 

When I was a little girl, a very little girl, I wanted to be a ballerina. I could envision the stage, the music and my perfect, graceful body flying through space. But how did a three-year-old know about such things? My family came from farmers, people of the earth, not artists. What weird reconfiguration of fate placed me there? What master plan was in play?

I always felt just a little outside the family. As though I wasn’t really there. I was in a physical sense of course. I was the one with the blonde curls and soulful eyes. I was the wise child who didn’t say much but seemed to know plenty. The one who always wondered if the stork had made a wrong turn because of a snow storm or earthquake. The others fit into each other like puzzle pieces. They made a picture that made sense. I was the piece that no one could find the niche into which I belonged.

The next dream was to be a fireman. Then a teacher. Then a doctor. A bon vivant who strolled the streets of Paris singing out ‘bonjour, bonjour!’ My mind couldn’t settle on just one, I wanted to be them all. Perhaps that is how I came to writing. There are no limits there, you can be whoever and whatever you want to be. Just put the pen to paper and voila you are there, you are it. Simple. Easy. Well, not quite.

My head was in the clouds or off on some distant planet. My heart was wrapped in the colors of my imagination – such vibrant, dimensional colors that I never longed to be back on Earth. Yet, time and again I would be pulled back to perform a mundane task; laundry, cooking, making my bed, homework, going to work. And each time the me inside of me would protest, pout a little and carry on like the martyr I was. ‘It’s not fair,’ I’d mutter to myself. ‘I don’t want to do this.’ At which point the practical me would surface and scold. I had to work hard, I had to carry my weight, fulfill my obligations – life was expecting it of me and I acquiesced. Damn it! Damn it all to hell!

I comforted myself with the dream that one day I would have my dream. That one day I would finish all the chores and work and obligations and then I could really live my dream. Even though my dream was constantly shifting and changing shape and no matter how much I chased it, it could never be caught, I still dreamed of living my dream.

Is it an inherent quality of writers that they are never satisfied? Is it part of the spiritual and mental makeup of the scribe? Or is it that we can so easily assume the viewpoint of anyone and anything? That is a quality that has always annoyed many in my life. I can pick up an identity and be it – like that. I always have wondered if it’s a charm or a curse. I’m not sure I will ever be able to answer that question and maybe I prefer to have it lurking around in my psyche to tease and taunt me like a naughty lover who won’t commit. Meanwhile, half the time I feel like I should be committed.

So here I am, all grown up as they say and I’m still chasing the dream of the living the dream and I have to ask myself, ‘What is it?’ So many answers pop up, like impatient school children flailing arms in the air when they are sure they know the answer to the teacher’s question. But only answer that rings true is, writing. I want to write. I want to spend the rest of my life writing. And if I’m lucky I will die in front of my computer or at a desk with pen and pad in hand, in the middle of thought that was so pure and perfect that I had to get it down before I lost it. I may never amount to anything, be a someone, be sought after by fans or groupies or even get any of my books published BUT I will always write. And that makes me a writer because a writer writes. And so I am living my dream. So, it dreams to me now pretty damn fine.

Tell me your dreams.

WC

11 thoughts on “How Does It Dream To You Now?

  1. Ok.
    I’ve read many books.
    Ok. I write.
    Ok. I like to write.
    But I have a clear image on who ‘writers’ are and none of them have anything to do with me (other then that they write).
    Or so I thought until now.
    Until I’ve read your lines.
    If anybody were to say: read this and if you can identify with it, tell me you are a writer.
    I’d have to say “I am a writer”.
    Not only do I identify, I could have written this.
    Word for word.
    Freaky.
    Actually, where I came from it wasn’t classed as that at all, ‘writer’ I mean.
    It was classed as lazy, dreamer, ‘should be playing sports’, ‘should be good at math’, ‘should focus on making money’.
    Maybe those thoughts still linger in the back of my head.
    Maybe that’s why I get up and go to work every morning. Maybe that’s why I am good at sports (maybe not fit enough but I do understand the concept). Maybe that’s why I am not as stupid as I sometimes give myself credit for.
    But bottom line is:
    ‘Nature screwed up when designing me, it would have come in so much handier if I could have grown a pen finger.”
    As far as dreams go, as you say correctly, writers can be anything they want, any moment that they want. Except of course, when we run out of clean clothes.

    Thanks for an enlightening post.
    Happy Easter Weekend your way WC!

    Or so I thought.
    Until I read your lines this morning.

    Happy Easter to you too, dearie. And of course you are a writer – I’ve never doubted it. Actually, it’s kind of nice to know that you grew up with the same affliction(s) – makes me feel a little less lonely. 😉
    Love,
    Annie

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  2. Could you tidy up those last two lines for me please? I get aggravated at the fact that we can correct things when commenting, I am not that perfect.

    I couldn’t figure out what you wanted me to clean up. They seemed fine to me.
    WC

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  3. Hey, you. I totally believe that you could publish. You’re amazing. And what’s a dream if we can’t continue chasing it? Once we catch it, it’s reality, and we have to find the next pursuit. Keep up your hard work, lady.

    M.

    Thanks for the vote of confidence honey. It means a lot to me.
    WC

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  4. This is similar to one of our many conversations, yes? 😉
    Oh, Annie. . .
    If I had the right answers to all these questions I would have gladly given them to you so long ago.
    Is it an inherent quality of writers that they are never satisfied?
    You knew the answer to this query.
    It still made me smile though.
    You do have the talent to write about people, places and things and you make us believe that.
    Now make the damn world believe it like I know you can. You have the keys but there’s a door you need to walk through in order to have that chance.
    It would mean giving up certain things. {ouch}
    Writing is sacrifice.
    But you knew that too, didn’t you?
    As always, I am your #1 fan and will remain in that corner ad nauseum.
    As always, incredible picture.
    write gator,
    ~m
    LOL – well yeah…isn’t this the same conversation we keep having again and again? 😉

    I don’t know…maybe I (or we writers) don’t want the answers to those questions – maybe the rhetorical stands good as it is. Maybe it’s that stuff that keeps us writing. A lot of maybe’s….

    Making the damn world believe is the trick – anybody out there with a clue on that one, please tell me!

    Yes, I know you are my fan as I am yours – we have a fricking mutual admiration society thing going on here – and we really have to get that beer one of these days.

    And yeah, that picture – amazing how the blue of her eyes matches the blue of the book – couldn’t resist it.

    Love ya brotha,
    Annie

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  5. You and I are so much alike it’s scary. Every word you put down here is a thought I’ve had go through my head. Except the fireman. I never wanted to be a fireman. I wanted to be a forest ranger. A lawyer. A doctor. And even the ballerina. I have 13 years of training to prove it.

    And assuming the character? Me too. And I agree. Curse or charm? Both I think.

    And I can’t figure out if I’m still defining myself, or if I’m already defined, but it’s so loose and free that I really am anything and everything. A chameleon in people’s clothing.

    We’ve been on the same wavelength lately. Must be something in the air.

    LOL – Kel and I go through that also. A real meeting of the minds. Although, I’m convinced that like souls do find a way to gather at the same metaphysical water cooler. It’s nice to know there are a few others out there.

    As to something in the air…well in my neck of the woods, it’s definitely Spring. Which always signals new beginnings I think for me.

    Happy Easter, Lass.

    WC

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  6. Oh Annie. Your post struck a chord so deeply that it brought tears to my eyes. The part about being able to assume other viewpoints so easily. Did you know that when I visit my dad’s house in Alabama now, I have a Southern accent–only for the time I’m there? And when I talk to a client on the phone who is from the South, I also start slipping into the drawl. Yes, the writer in us, I understand. We can be whatever we choose and what a freedom that is.

    I have to believe that it’s the chasing of the dream that I enjoy most–and perhaps you too? You know there’s the kind of person who loves the journey and then there’s the kind of person who can only think about the destination and ending the journey.

    A writer writes. Yes. So true. For me it’s that spark of creativity, that surge of imagination and then the shaping and molding of it into words that brings such joy. When it’s all done, I can read it and be pleased. But even then, as I read, it’s the participation in the creativity that brings the satisfaction all over again, the re-creation that occurs in your mind as you read. That’s what happens when I read your writing, by the way.

    I can always tell how good an artist is, in this case a writer, by how I’m inspired by them. Their work brings you alive. You want to be and you want to do and quite frankly, that you end up having something at the end is rather inconsequential for me. I just love chasing those dreams and as Kenzie said, once you catch it, you are onto the next pursuit. Call it the love of the game. Call it the love of life…you’ve got it girl. And whether you are ever published or not, you will always have that spark, that creativity. It’s nice to be recognized for it and to expand one’s audience, but it really, if you ask me, it is all about the writing.

    ~ Popsgirl

    Hey PG!
    I can totally see you becoming the sweet southern girl while you’re in Alabama – even when you talk about the trips to see your Pop I can hear it in your voice and see it on your face. I know that thing too – I easily slip into regional accents when I’m talking with people from other places. LOL. I used to worry about it, like I couldn’t hold on to my own personality or something but I think really it is a subtle way of empathising with the person you’re talking to.

    You’re right about chasing the dream. The hunt is the fun part. Very good point. In a way that makes me happy to think that. That the chasing of the dream is the dream and living the dream. Yes, too true.

    A writer writes. Yes. So true. For me it’s that spark of creativity, that surge of imagination and then the shaping and molding of it into words that brings such joy. When it’s all done, I can read it and be pleased. But even then, as I read, it’s the participation in the creativity that brings the satisfaction all over again, the re-creation that occurs in your mind as you read.
    Good grief, this is exactly what I go through too. And the rereading of the piece has the same effect for me as well. It’s like reliving a wonderful, perfect day where everything you want to happen, happens. Absolutely.

    Yes, in the long run it is all about the writing. I suppose the thing I have about publishing is that I want to be able to do that all the time, just that. Not to have to do other things to pay the rent. That’s the frustration for me, I think. There never seems to be enough time to write because I always want more.

    Thank you for such a great vat of feedback, I feel so duplicated. Love ya, hon.
    WC

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  7. Oh I can see Zoe in this post…I really can!
    As for my dreams, I only have one. To be happy. I’ve spent much of my life chasing dreams only to find that they weren’t really I wanted after all once I got there. The only dream I ever really truly wanted that never changed was to be a mum. Thanks to Zoe, that one already came true 🙂
    Kelly

    You know, it’s funny you said that because I thought the picture looked a bit like Zoe – except for the blue eyes.

    I think you’re ahead of most of us, just knowing what it is you want in your life and knowing you have it.

    Annie

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  8. Ah, well yes, the free time so you do not have to work a job and can just write–totally. I get your point. That is the ideal scene for a writer, being able to make a living off your creativity.

    With my “day job” I am writing all the time–content for lawyers websites, but that does not result in the kind of creative outlet we are talking about here. No siree. When the writing becomes a profession, even if you are writing great novels and getting published, I would have to think there is some sacrifice of your creativity. The downside would be that editors jump in and hack up your work and unless you like the edits, well…you just have to roll with the punches because the novel is also your livelihood. Editors are part of the publishing gig. If you were lucky enough to get a really good editor that really groks what you have written and enhances it with a bit of polish, then new problem solved. I tend to jump ahead and see what new problem arises after “all is bliss” because sometimes solutions do become the next problems. So how about that? I have now visualized you as Annie the novelist that is making a living and battling with her new editor problems. Pretty good, eh? Moving right along with your goal and all…

    ~ PG

    I know what you mean about the tech writing. I did it for quite a while and found it wasn’t really very gratifying.

    LOL – well thanks for that visualization…I’ll take it. That is a problem I would love to have, providing I win in the end, of course. 😉
    WC

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  9. The truth is we are all nuts, us writers. And we love it. We know that we are, what we are. We know ourselves inside and out, the insecurities, the passion, the drive, the desire, the inability to ever ever ever be satisfied with anything, esp. our writing. Oh sure, content for a moment but then it’s on to the next thing. And then the next, constantly pushing, constantly searching, constantly yearning-because all we really want to do is sit around and write, and we want someone to finally say that it is okay for us to do that. Someone who can pay us so that we don’t have to do the day to day jobs that blood suck the life out of us. And that is really how I see it. I wanted to be an astronaut until the Challenger blew up, then a naval aviator when Top Gun came out (even though I am afraid of heights), then a writer, then a rock star, then a Doctor, then a Physical Therapist, work with Handicapped Kids, then a Physician’s Assistant, and right before I decided to not go to Medical school, I finished my degree as a writer. Go figure. Sometimes you just have to be who you are, crazy, insecure, dramatic, hilarious, etc. That’s who we are, and that’s why we draw one another into our worlds, we really deep down inside are glad we didn’t fit in with the rest, we do love our minds, and we love other people who have minds like ours. Great post, gator. Yours truly, Anabel Smith (the black sheep)

    Yup, we’re all nuts and we do love it. And yeah, deep down we are glad we didn’t fit in. You nailed it, girl.
    WC

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