On Writing and Not Writing

I’m sure I have been away from writing in this space for many reasons.  I’ve been consumed by a general need not to communicate what seems an inner process of becoming.  It was clear to me that I was focusing so much on all of the personal growth that was fit to print that I started ignoring all of the oh-so-important darker places that don’t need the spotlight of a public forum.  Also, I have been experiencing a sense of freedom, several new verandas opening in my mind, when I do not have need to wonder whether anyone read me today, understood me today, was shocked by me today.

At the same time, I have missed the near daily practice of sharing all of my epiphanies because the need to write fed my spiritual reading and meditation.  Without the need to churn out a few hundred words each night I have not necessarily been seeking ways to meet and describe the divine.  Instead, I have allowed a handful of “real world” concerns to draw my attention.  It is only becoming clear to me now that some of my struggles could be filled with a lot less, well, struggle if I could remember my ideals of surrender and belief.

Also a renewed interest in fiction has drawn me away from all of this navel gazing – I mean soul searching.  I have been invited to join a wonderful writing group and am in the process of dusting off some old stories I had left to languish just about a year ago when I found myself drawn to the quest for mysticism and mantra.  At this point, I can hope that I can unify these two loves – to find a way that spirit can enliven story, and vice versa.  Driving to the Cape last weekend I listened to this amazing lecture by Sue Monk Kidd.  It’s clear how her own spiritual quest for the divine feminine after year in traditional Christianity inform her novels.

Two other recommendations: The Maytrees by Annie Dillard (such brilliantly poetic writing to describe mid-twentieth century bohemian Provincetown) and The Spiral Staircase by Karen Armstrong (such a compelling glimpse into the now-theologian’s journey from the convent through late 1960s Oxford).

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One thought on “On Writing and Not Writing

  1. gartenfische March 27, 2008 / 10:41 pm

    I have read both the books you mention and also thought they were great. I love both Dillard and Armstrong. (Have you read Dillard’s For the Time Being?)

    I’ll have to check out the lecture, as I like Kidd, too.

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