A writing love story

By Liz, wishing spring would hurry up!

One of my favorite meditation teachers starts one of her meditations with a story. It’s about a woman going to a wise elder and telling him all her problems and the things that made her sad. The list was long. At the end of the story, the elder says, “But tell me, beloved, what do you love?”

This story feels very apropos when I’m writing some days. It’s so easy to get caught up in the bad stuff—the lack of time, the looming deadline, words not coming easily, bad first drafts, the rejections, all the things. 

But there’s a reason why all of us writers are here. There’s a reason why we are, for lack of a better analogy, bleeding all over our keyboards day after day. 

We love writing. 

I’ll admit some days that love is a little harder to remember, like when your partner annoys you for the hundredth time and you wonder what the heck you saw in them in the first place. 

But unlike a romantic relationship, it’s hard to break up with your creative self. I honestly don’t even think it’s a thing. Some people put it on ice for a while when the frustration or the discouragement becomes overwhelming, but it’s never really over. It can’t be. It will keep drawing you back in. 

It’s part of you. 

So I’ve started reminding myself what I love about writing:

  • I love falling into a new story—the possibilities are endless, the pages are blank (but in a good way), the story is waiting for me to find it. 
  • I love when a new character pops into my head. A glimmer of a person, not fully formed, who I can mold to meet the needs of the story. Because you can’t do this with real people, right??
  • I love losing myself in a place I’ve created. Spending time with old friends, seeing what people are up to. Getting new information that only they can tell me. 
  • I love knowing that my imagination is so rich that it can create worlds for others to enjoy.
  • I love remembering the feeling I got the first time I wrote a story.

It helps me remember why I started doing this in the first place, long before that first contract. And it makes me want to keep writing. 

Readers, how do you reconnect with something you love?

27 Thoughts

  1. What a lovely piece, Liz. Thanks for the reminder.

    I love all the things you listed, and also hearing that the world and story I created helped someone through a hard time. Those emails saying my book let a reader escape a long stay in a hospital waiting room, or even a week in the hospital themselves mean so much.

  2. A simple reminder of why we do what we do. For me, that’s taking the time to create a visual of some writing advice, and when turned into an infographic, makes the complex seem simple. Besides, doodling with a digital app is fun!

  3. For me, sometimes it’s a matter of putting my camera to the side for a while. The old saying absence makes the heart grow fonder is very true. If it’s something you are really passionate about, it will draw you back. I might have worked out the problem in my head or figured another way to accomplish what I was after, the urge to pick up my camera HAS to be satisfied or the initial dream of capturing that rare and awesome photo has me going back to try to live that dream. In the end, the nightmare seems pitiful in the rearview mirror and the sight ahead looks bright. So for me, it’s just giving it time.
    2clowns at arkansas dot net

  4. Wonderful list, Liz. Yes to all. I had put aside writing for a while, but it never stopped tugging. The stories and characters kept knocking at the door. The hinges were rusty when I first returned, but it’s getting easier!

  5. I love this, Liz. Reminds me of the question of “What are you grateful for today?” Writing from a place of love and gratitude is just easier.

  6. Yes, Karen, making a gratitude list is the best way to get out of the doldrums and get re-interested in life. I waft between hot and cold on most of my hobbies, but I always go back to them because there really is love there.

  7. I like your meditation teacher’s idea of starting with a story. I find going away for the weekend always regenerates my love of writing. New area, new people and things to observe. Great list, great reminders.

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