Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Inspiration and Intimidation

I've been reading quite a bit lately. I've always loved to read. Fiction, non-fiction, romance, comedy, mystery, autobiography, history, anything and everything. I have always tried to limit myself to one book at a time, but recently I've been reading two or three at a time. Makes for interesting dreams...

I also have always loved to write. Because of that, when I read an excellent piece of literature, I feel so inspired. I admire the author, and his or her ability to take a brilliant idea and put it on paper so eloquently. Yet at the same time, I also feel completely intimidated.

When an idea for a story comes into my head, I grab a notebook and start writing. The problem, though, is that the ideas move so rapidly through my head and get so jumbled that I find myself overwhelmed and frustrated. It makes me second-guess my ability to write well. Am I too scatterbrained to be a good writer? That's a very good possibility. Sometimes I feel like my brain is really a train station, and my inspired thoughts trains that move in and out of the depot at a rapid pace, never staying long enough to stick.

Maybe I should go out and buy Writing for Dummies...

Just last night I was conversing with a very dear friend of mine about writing. He discovered that I blog, and understandably requested that I let him read it. It's always interesting to get a glimpse into your friends' minds. He read a bit of my stuff, and began to encourage me. His opinion was that I am a talented writer, and have a way with words. Flattering, obviously. It made me feel more confident of myself. It's always nice to know that someone appreciates what you do and believes in you. Maybe I'll find a way to sort my crazy thoughts and someday I'll actually finish a novel....

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


I was pleasantly surprised to see a comment on my last blog informing me that someone actually enjoyed reading my posts. Not only did I receive that bit of flattery, but the commenter also said that I write about things that they did not previously know about. Me? Interesting and informative? No way. I almost wanted to print the comment and frame it.

The instant feeling of gratification washed over me in waves, which was immediately followed by curiosity. Why is it that we, as everyday humans, crave acceptance and recognition? Why is it that so many of us go about our daily lives in the hope that someone, somewhere will realize what a wonderful contribution we are to society?

The rolodex in my brain starting flipping furiously, back through time, randomly selecting memories that I have of times when I did a good deed or accomplished something specifically for the acknowledgment that I would receive. Sports during school, essays for the high school newspaper, sucking up to coworkers and bosses, on and on the list went. Am I really so shallow that I crave recognition? Approval? Acceptance? Wait, is that it? Acceptance? Is it more that I want to be accepted by my peers? Or do I simply want to leave a legacy of accomplishments? I have no idea. Maybe it's too early and I haven't had enough coffee for this kind of self-analysis. Either way, I know that from time to time I will go back to that post and read the comment again. Indeed.