There are days that the emotions we put into our stories take their toll. A writer I am happy to have found, reminded me of the pitfalls that we hear of too often. By definition writers can be tortured souls, enlightened beings, and sacks of meat in the same window of time. We find the joys of life and find the words that fail others, we see the evil people and can describe the depths their souls are willing to plummet, and we can acknowledge the man who sat aside and did nothing because every decision was too painful. We can find an empathy in these conditions even when we don’t have them ourselves. Someone who has never entertained murder, cannot imagine what havoc this could play on the human psyche, except an artist. A writer is the artist of words and emotions.
I have met people who can write the darkest of passages and continue with their lives as if it truly doesn’t matter but these are rare. One of my favorite authors of a positive, selfless view of the human condition, took his own life in depression. Words have power, far beyond their meanings. They have the chance to shape a better world, to titillate us with stories of monsters we couldn’t imagine and the heroes that oppose them. Some are forever damaged by the ranges they allow themselves to feel. Others turn to drink and drugs to soothe the noise inside. These are the ones we all know and can recite by heart. True geniuses of the written word who sank into a bottle or learned to loathe their own being. It is the curse of creativity.
There is another way, though it takes discipline. It takes resolve. I was reminded yesterday by the aforementioned writer whose brilliant, simple answer reminded me of a path I have neglected too long. I forgot until tonight, how well simply being, meditating with no other thought in my head, can clear the excesses of the process and strip it down to what I needed. Insight is not free, it costs dearly, but you can pay it back with time, oneness, and peace.
I know many will take this as a bubbly cheer-leading post and resume that shot of whiskey. I write this more for myself than anyone else. Everyone here has something that works for them. Yesterday I was reminded of what dulled the edges of a sharp, sometimes barbed tongue for myself. It would be selfish of me not to share. That is one thing I have never been accused of and never will.
Tonight I meditate, thanks to another struggling author through her selfless words and quicker jokes. We all have lessons in life to learn. I am glad to find mine when I need them most. Thank you.
Charles R. Colp