Writer’s Cage

I just checked my blog page. My last entry was on January 13. Here is my excuse for not attending to the blog. I was working on a writing project that was not getting done because I kept giving priority to the blog and seldom got around to working on the project. So I reversed my priorities. Work on the project in the wee hours that used to be designated to blogging. Well, it appears that there is just so much writing in me in a day because, as you can see, there were not blogs written. The project was completed yesterday…so here I am again. Excited to be back.

It isn’t that I wasn’t blog inspired. I have notes, ideas scratched on lone pieces of papers or in one of my many notebooks that I carry. I can use these in the days to come, but the passion I felt when I wrote them first is gone. I may wonder why an idea seemed so important at the time I wrote it down.

There is an interesting thing about inspiration. You might think inspiration comes from outer space. It often does. An idea slips into your head from some strange place, unexpected and not always explained by the context.  A writer will write it down if they are smart because I can tell you from experience, it will fly away and be forgotten if it isn’t put in a cage. Paper is the writer’s cage.

I finished writing the piece. I don’t want to share yet what it is, but I can tell you this. Many of the words and stories I share are inspired. Thoughts pop into my mind when I write or ideas that came at other times and written down can be used. But inspiration doesn’t always come from the heavens. Much comes from my life here on earth. The notes I save may be words of wisdom spoken to me in a particular context or stories told to me about someone’s life. It is a true thing about true wisdom. If it is of God, the person who spoke the words won’t remember them or will remember them barely.

When I take note of what people say they are usually taken aback. What a strange practice! I tell them that what they said is so beautiful or meaningful or funny that I don’t want to forget it. I don’t add that what they shared is from God and that their insight may have come from the heavens and channeled to me. I may share their words later, perhaps in a blog along with my reflections, but it could also show up in a story, coming from the mouth of character.

I was at a memorial service a few years ago in which a sister of the diseased shared a story from her youth about her brother building a little house that was smashed by their father after she lied to him about her brother hitting her. It was a powerful story. I used it. The woman will never read my piece but there is a slim chance the father might. I treated it with kindness and honored the wisdom of the father in the situation.

I was thinking that maybe this is how people go on living after they die. Family members will tell stories but few survive for more than a generation or so. Once writing became the norm people didn’t have to work at remembering any more. Besides that, I don’t hear people looking to their ancestors for wisdom to help them live their lives. They seem content to let the world now teach them and the messages they get aren’t necessarily scrutinized.

Thinking of this makes me think that the writer is doing an important work. It feels good to ponder this on a cold but sunny morning in Minnesota.

Well, I am back. This is a good thing. I came to the page thinking I was going to write one thing and wrote something totally different.

Happy Valentines Day!  A friend just called me and told me she is on her way to listen to an inspirational speaker. I said, “That is better than chocolate!”


3 thoughts on “Writer’s Cage”

  1. Hi, Judy. Your intro to this post reminded me of a concept I ran into a long time ago: Blogging Without Obligation (BWO).

    Once you start a blog, it’s very easy to feel that you must regularly keep up with it and to make apologies if you don’t. When I found a post on Tartx about Blogging Without Obligation, I felt much better about the whole thing. When you need a break from blogging because life gets in the way or you have another writing project to do, that’s okay. Go do it. The blog will be waiting for your return. In fact, when I think I need to be gone from my blog for a while, I’ll write a post to that effect, like this past summer when I took a writing class.

    Here’s the original Tartx link about Blogging Without Obligation: https://www.tartx.com/blog/blogging-without-obligation/

    I can’t believe it’s still available. I see that BWO was established in 2007.

    And here is one of my former blog’s posts that starts out apologetically, even though I’m BWO:

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