Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Getting Excited! About Everything!

This is a post from Temple Hogan, who is having technical difficulties.

As an aging writer and human being, excitement is no longer at the top of my list of priorities. Waking up to no aches and pains, not finding a new wrinkle, gray hair, or (gasp) bald spot, being able to eat a bowl of ice cream with chocolate and nuts without it showing up on my butt, these things bring a tinge of excitement!

But being excited about life, about things we love to do like the thankless job of writing, child rearing and house keeping, makes us find and give joy in unequaled measure. It’s easy to find that moment in a busy day, to experience that ray of elation at a toddler doing her work-out, at a husband’s kiss of appreciation, at a loved pet that crawls into your lap for a cuddle. It’s also easy to feel that sense of satisfaction when the dishes are done, the toilet doesn’t need your attention this very minute and a new, working refrigerator stands where the thirty year old traitor quite on you without warning!

One of the best moments in my life was years ago when I sold my first book. What elation! What joy! I had the validation I needed. I was a writer! No matter what happened in the future I knew I was now a writer. I remember hearing other writers express the same feelings. We all know it takes a special person to be a writer, to close yourself away from family and loved ones. I remember years ago, when my precious grand daughter was a chubby armed little two year old who stood in the shallow water making mud pies on the dock. ‘I busy,’ she used to say. My husband sat in a chair nearby watching her because I was upstairs in my office, writing. I used to feel such an urge to rush down the stairs and out to the lake to take her up in my arms and hug and kiss on her fat little cheeks, but something compelled me to stay in that chair in front of my typewriter! There was no excitement then. I was torn between knowing I was missing precious moments I could never get back and the need to sit and expression some inner part of myself, probably my liver!

What compelled me on is that moment, that flash of excitement that comes as a phrase unfolds itself in absolute clarity. The flare of excitement that makes us pause and wonder at our own brilliance. Is it ego that makes us write? I used to watch a paint show where Helen Van Wycke explained how a painter struggles to bend the paint to project her images. Well, a writer is doing the same thing and when we succeed, when the words are right and true on our paper, we pause, experiencing an excitement that we’ve done what we set out to do.

Another moment of excitement is when we began molding our stories and characters and they reveal themselves to us and help tell us what they’re thinking, what their goals are and in the telling, we find brilliant little snippets to add to our story. Excitement stirs within our breasts and we’re compelled, absolutely compelled to write it all down. I don’t know about you! To me, there’s excitement and then there’s EXCITEMENT. I’ve felt both and they’re fantastic.

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