November 28th, 2005
Comments Off
secret code

I’m having one of those days where there are so many things I want to get out onto the page, so many ideas, so many words, yet nothing flows. One of those days where there are a million things you want to do, yet none of them get started. Instead I had a long, detailed conversation with the man who came to fix the dishwasher, about the nature of consumerism and the pitfalls of living in a world where everything has become disposable. Even dishwashers.
I was feeling discouraged again about the challenge of getting my current manuscript accepted, repeated rejection launches an author into the throes of feeling like a hack. Yet I know it is meant to live somewhere out there in the world.
Oh, do I talk about this stuff here? Yes, I need to be frank for a minute.
So many people have asked me for the follow up book to Living Out Loud, and I know that I could write one. And it would probably be o.k. and sell pretty well, and I could just go about my life, make some money and continue on this path being the creativity guru for years (even though I don’t really know what the hell I’m talking about sometimes). But here’s the thing. I want to grow as an artist, as an author. I don’t want to be one who writes the same book over and over. I want to push myself to new places, experiment, jump up and down, do things that feel a little uncomfortable, and question things. I do not wish to be an “expert”. And so I came up with something new. Except it seems that many want me to just do “that other thing that you did the last time”, we like that best. And truthfully, “we know it will sell”. The new thing is not so sellable. Which is probably good because nothing should ever be created “to sell”.
Someone sent me a link to this article by Margaret Wheatley. The line that rang in my ears was,
“When the forms of an old culture are dying, the new culture is created by a few people who are not afraid to be insecure.” -Rudold Bahro. Then the question is posed, Could insecurity, self-doubt, be a good trait? God, I hope so, because lately I must be on the cutting edge. The author goes on to say that “feeling insecure, even groundless, might actually increase my ability to stay in the work.” She quotes Valclav Havel,
“Hope, is not the conviction that something will turn out well, but the certainty that something makes sense regardless of how it turns out.”
read that again.
As I take a slow, lung filling inhalation followed by an equally slow exhalation, I must tell you that deep down I feel more resolved in my ideas than ever before. That amidst the questioning, the rejection, the groundlessness, I feel a great strength stirring and it’s presence has seemed a little contradictory. But in that quote lies the answer, at some level I have accepted that there is a reason that I haven’t found a publisher yet. I feel resolved in my process, that somehow it is teaching me something.
Maybe that is why I am drawn to the print test patterns on the bottom of boxes lately. That behind everything in our contemporary world there is a tiny secret code, that only makes sense to those who created it.

Comments are closed.

Ad Free