Thursday, September 27, 2012

Arc of Life

My office seems a little strange to me these days, with all the emotional changes I’m going through.  But this is just another stage of my development, the arc of my life.

I still find myself vacillating from joy to sadness.  I am realizing that this process I’m currently in must be something like being an “empty nester.”  I am emerging from the genesis of my characters to their exodus.  They are leaving my care and moving into the wide open unknown of the real world.  I have brought them into being, cared for them, and nurtured them.  I had to give a soul to them, so as to give their voices resonance.  Having done my part as their parent, I gladly set my children free to fly on their own.   

I can’t pretend that I am eager to see my creative offspring leave me.   Not because they aren’t ready, but because I don’t really want to see them go.


The temptation when creating characters, like raising children, is to mold them the way you want them to be molded.  You try at first to live vicariously through them, but the characters fight back.  Eventually, you see that they have their own voice, with their own personalities and destinies.  In the days, months and years of chronicling these characters, I found myself frustrated and sometimes wished that they would grow up enough to be somewhat self-sufficient.  Of course, now that they are, I wish that I could freeze them in time.      


At first, I tried forcing them into my mold, and then I tried charming them, and eventually tried guiding them, until at last I allowed them to guide me.  I watched as their natural personalities came out.  Once they were formed, I could not change them any more than I could change a real person.   I can merely watch and write as the arc of their life unfolds, refining them.


They were created to live in the open, to live freely with no chains.  We too, have a Creator.  The only way for us to live a life of freedom is to acknowledge that we are His wondrous creation and allow our Creator to guide the arc of our lives.  How are you allowing HIM to refine YOU?


Wednesday, September 12, 2012

My Writing Chair

Many emotions are moving through my mind, as I sit here in my “writing chair.”  The first draft of my first novel is complete.  With this milestone fading on the horizon, I am now working with my editor, who is steadily fine-tuning my first creative offspring.  It has taken me three emotional years to write this book, Abyss of the Fallen.

It is with determination that I sit here in this chair, the same spot which I have sat in over the past three years, pondering, praying, writing, thinking and weaving the characters of my book.  The emotions of these characters bore over my own, flooding my mind and my heart, until the only thing that I could do, was to write.  The emotions poured through my mind and into my hand, and I began to write.  I often found that I could not place my fingers onto the keyboard.  Trusting my words to a computer, whose brain would store my thoughts, just would not suffice.  The emotions were too raw, too new, and only my trusty gel pen would do.  Not just any old pen and definitely not a pencil!  As my mind was wrapping itself around new ideas of ancient and current truths, I was surprised to find that there was poetry to the words.   I have no explanation for this, other than the paths of the imagination have many hidden routes. 

I can see now in vivid clarity that which was once incredibly obscured.   The vast beginning stages of my journey seemed at the time to be randomly placed threads, but I can now see a tapestry of words forming into a completed work.  This first book could not have been written any second, minute, hour, day, month or year sooner or later than it was.  As always, the Creator’s timing was perfect, although I didn’t quite realize how perfect throughout my journey.  I needed the perspective that time allows, to clearly write what my mind was seeing.  It is overwhelming at times, to witness how the joys and pains of my life would so saturate the words which I labored to deliver.

This milestone brings with it so many feelings which mere words can barely do justice.   In the end, having only two pages separating me from the completion of a three year labor of love, I had great difficulty getting the final words onto paper.  I had invested so much time in creating my characters, which I grew to love and despise in thankfully not so equal measure.  I knew that the end needed to come, yet I didn’t want it to.   But end it did, and yet the journey is truly just beginning. 

Now I find myself sitting in this well used writing chair, sometimes staring out my window, sadly wishing that I could wrestle and creatively hug these characters yet again.  Over the past three years, I would sit here daily and work on research or write.  Quite frankly, I’m used to it.

As with everything, life moves on, and so does the life of my characters.  This phase of the process produces emotions of apprehension for my creative offspring.  What kind of life they will have out in the real world?   But I know that the Creator, who gave me this story to tell, will see me through to completion, and I know that He has all of this in the palm of his immortal hands.