It's the best, longest, most beautiful autumn I remember. All the trees, everywhere, except the elms, this yellow-golden-orange color. The tree leaves on the creek bed were the first to turn, first to fall, first to show the naked black branches against the bluest of skies. I don't tell people this much, but I love trees when they're all stark and bare like that. They look like winter when it's still and quiet, and makes this burn rush up and heave right in the middle of my chest.
I learned something the other day. Something that had been rolling around in my skull for quite some time. One of those things you don't really want to understand, but one day it dawns on you that you do, and it wrecks havoc in your writing life, but mostly your life in general.
I cannot believe how slow I am at understanding things, about really getting them. I look at the big picture of things and it's hard to see things on a smaller level.
So today I was thinking that I have not written anything truly inspirational, or felt any true inspiration at all, or put words together to make a story in a very, very, very, very, very, very long time.
And it's because I've been waiting for it, I've been looking for it elsewhere and hoping it would strike. Trying to find things that would inspire me: surfing the internet, Pinterest, blogs, books, anything! Things caught my eye, words I wished I had written, but they ended up only making me long for having written instead of inspiring me to go write.
I thought back to when my Internet was limited, and I could not rely upon it for anything. So I relied upon myself, because that was all I had. And as horrible as my writing was, back then it was authentic. It came from me, not stemmed from something I read and tried to repeat within my own words and sentences. It was real writing. Because it was original and not spawned from something else. And maybe it wasn't so horrible.
Inspiration is not to be gained from others, certainly it is affected by others, other words, other photos, other beauty, other people. But inspiration and originality come from within. Not without. You must rely upon yourself for inspiration, for only when your inspiration is exclusive to you will you gain originality and uniqueness.
Read the classics, read the greats, read, read, read, read. Be inspired! There's no stopping you. But when you find yourself inspiration-less, don't rely upon anything but your own true inspiration. Set up limits. Set up boundaries.
Just you and your voice. Your notebooks. Your pens and your inspiration.
I've held to the quote,
I write when I am inspired, and I see to it that I am inspired at nine o'clock every morning. ~Peter De Vriesfor a very long time. But I felt like I could never grasp it completely. I didn't know what it really meant until I experienced it myself.
I must find my own inspiration. Because if I don't, all I will ever be is a second rate, copy-cat writer who never once said anything for herself. Never owned a single thought that was her own, never said anything but to repeat what someone more important had said before, never became original. Never was.
This frightens me.
More than I can say.
To never have said anything worthwhile to have lived all my life believing I was something, only to discover at the end that I was nothing, and I've a lie in believing I was writing something real. I don't want that. Never. Never. Never.
"Tell the naked truth . . ."
"Write hard and clear about what hurts." ~Ernest Hemingway
Rely upon the complex workings of your own mind for inspiration . . .
" . . . and nine times out of ten, you will have become original without ever having notice." ~C.S. Lewis
You don't love autumn for the mere reason of loving autumn. You don't just love autumn. You love what it means.
Fires on the hearth. Rubber boots. Leaves. Tea. Cozy socks, sweaters, coats. Cold. Snuggling that seems to mean so much more when the weather is raging rampant outside.
It seems a time for deep thinking. Changing of seasons always does. When things changes, thoughts come from deeper down then they used to.
When the wind blows cold, your nose and cheeks catch it full on, glowing pink. I always miss how my nose gets cold in the autumn.