A man should learn to detect and watch that gleam of light which flashes across his mind from within, more than the lustre of the firmament of bards and sages. Yet he dismisses without notice his thought, because it is his. In every work of genius we recognize our own rejected thoughts: they come back to us with a certain alienated majesty.
-Ralph Waldo Emerson
To me it is more than a blank computer screen staring at my eyes. It’s the blank canvas of choices and decisions, with one brain to guide them. A block is the failure to self actualize: thoughts running through my head that wither when I open my mouth or put fingers to keyboard. Vivid dreams, fierce insights, a deep and rich inner world that cannot coexist with the mundanity of its own expression.
The issue is not just writing–it pervades my life. The shred of divine within that sees deep mystery and understands human relationship has an energy blockage. The boundary between will and expression, thought and action, is stilted and rough, and sometimes it’s easier to keep thought inside than to hurl it into the world.
Questions of talent aside, there is a skill to be learned here as well. The discipline to sit in the fire and practice writing in patience, carefully collecting the gems and discarding the rest. The mastery of dialogue and metaphor, of anticipation and presentation. Writing a movie is nothing like editing a documentary film.
I never wanted to be a writer, I wanted to make movies and found writing as a possible entrée into that world. Upon sitting down to do so I realized how much I have to say, and how woefully unprepared I have been to say it. How incompatible a narrative screenplay is with a single flashing passionate thoughts-that those thoughts may take days or years or more lifetime than we have left to be crafted into a storyline.
There’s always the blog, where half-thoughts are welcome. And thankfully living gives opportunity to practice.
Discipline to sit, discipline to meditate, discipline to allow flow to happen. That’s what she said.