My thoughts have been reeling somewhat the last few weeks. Make that the 6 weeks since I returned to Amsterdam from 3 months of travelling. Some kind of post-travel decompression or something. As if diving back into the relatively mundane concerns of earning a living and doing the house-work and shopping was somehow… undesirable.
But like decompression, this period finally seems to be over. My joy in the work of teaching has resurfaced and the immediate pressure of confirming work is off. This morning I witnessed the most glorious sunrise over the canal houses of Amsterdam as birds swooped and flocked against a sky painted in ridiculously lovely pale blues and strident pinks. Jet trails flared like fiery comets in the sky and suddenly WHY I am here seems so much clearer again.
It’s good to be working on a new book again… the thrill of sorting new ideas, of writing everything new, instead of correcting, changing, and fixing all the time. I have learned to get some sort of kick out of the re-write process, but it’s nothing like the purity of getting a thought down for the first time.
I think I am also finally wriggling free of the shackles of the way of thinking I operated under for the last few years in Johannesburg. There I was forever concerned about WHERE this was all going. Now I am more concerned just to keep it going. I would watch my Facebook profile, my page, my groups, my blog stats, my twitter feed, applying corporate marketing thinking and methods and angsting over ever twitch and flickers of the stats dials. Now, I am happier to just create. I still have all that stuff of course I am just no longer a slave to the feedback it provides, reminding myself it is just a part of the picture, not the whole composition.
By the end of this week, I will have completed the first chapter of the new book, maybe even made a good start on the
second. I am having some fun with this one. I am trying to let the characters punch their way out of the wet paper bags of words I am keeping them in… letting something more spontaneous erupt before we head off together to the rest of the story. Just the joy of writing. It has taken 3 weeks of wrestling my ego and my structural thinking to get here, so we shall see where it all goes. It’s nice to be doing new things with the writing too.
I joined a couple of writers groups as well. This is another new thing: sharing, taking early feedback, a communion with others writers. There is so much going on here it seems churlish to not. So hopefully next week, there will be more news… maybe not. At least for now the vortex of the chaos is veiled behind the narrative I am throwing… its slightly more comfortable for now.