1 Philippians 1:6 - He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Christ Jesus

Sunday, February 13, 2011

What Inspires Me?

I am inspired by the quiet and an empty page awaiting great ideas be spilled from my finger tips. The inner dialogue in my head never seems to cease, one can guess how many great works have gone to waste because a pen and pad or laptop have been nowhere to be found at a time when my mind could not stop it’s flow. The itch catches me at odd times, while at work when I should be concentrating on scheduling shipments and grabbing due dates for customers or while I’m grocery shopping and should be concentrating on which coupon I clipped for the product I’m holding in my hand – or perhaps when I’m trying desperately to fall asleep because my body can no longer hold on but my mind won’t keep quiet. These are the times when so many good works go to waste, I promise myself I will remember to “write that down”, in the words of Van Wilder – but can never get it right when the pen and pad are available or the curser  blinks before me.

This inner dialogue, for as long as I can remember has haunted me. I have often seen my life in the form of the written word – should that make any sense to anybody that does not understand the art of writing, I would find myself surprised. Should this make sense to anybody at all, perhaps I would find myself even more surprised. It has been a great comfort to me during the trials of my life because in writing, there is a beginning, a middle, and an end – there is a plot and if I am the writer, I can control those outcomes. It brought me comfort knowing this and having this control during the times when my life felt out of control. I scribbled poetry, short story and journaled incessantly. I took every English class available to me in high school and found myself gravely disappointed to find that I tested out of every English and literature class offered at the UW extension in Sheboygan. I was lost without it, what could I do with this craving I had for more?

Other inspirations came to me throughout the years as I was told by friends along the way that my storytelling was fun to listen to, that my writing was fun and comical to read. That the stories I told of my life and various situations I found myself in were brought alive by the words I used. This brought confidence to me and lit the fire once again for me to do more than just journal. The poetry I once wrote seems to have lost it’s zeal in my life, as it spilled from my pen when I was angry and hurting. Yes, some were of silly, teenage love – but mostly my poetry is angry and depressing, reeking of a little girl who was hurting and calling for somebody – or nobody – to help. Therefore, I feel that poetry has served its purpose in my life. Short story – yes, I could do short story, though my short story perhaps would be closer to memoir I believe, as I would much rather write of experience than of fiction. I have always been inspired by self-help – I always thought one would have to have extensive degrees…letters after one’s name, if you will, to write a purposeful, successful self-help book and should that be the case – my book might be called “Scheduling: How to Give Your Customer a Due Date with Purpose” by Dana Bastian P.S.A.A./P.A.E (Production Scheduler, Accounting Associate/Phone Answerer Extraordinaire – I don’t so much like the title “receptionist” – answering the phone is just a bonus part of my job – one I find myself less than thrilled about).

I would also love to find myself being a freelance writer voicing my opinions about items of interest to me. I think it would be great to be a columnist – I picture myself in a couple of different situations…first, perhaps I should add that I once had my high school band instructor call me scatter-brained. Others may have been offended by this; however, I chuckled and agreed – I was, quite possibly, still am at times. I carry a planner and write everything in it – I have a freaky obsession with office supplies and an even more disturbing obsession with sticky notes – and if you ask me to say the word sticky notes – you probably would look at me and think I was absurdly weird. I’ve been like this for as long as I can remember – when we went shopping for school supplies as a kid, this was the best day of the summer for me – I organized, re-organized and organized again my school supplies that smelled fantastic and brand new. Freshly sharpened pencils – there isn’t anything better. Anyways – herein lies my point of my scattered brain, I am very off track in what I was beginning with…offended was the very last feeling I had by this remark because, quite simply and without being haughty, my band instructor knew without a doubt that I had my part down and I really did not need to be at that practice. We were rehearsing for the solo ensemble competitions and this was our clarinet group (ah yes, I was a clarinetist). I played first part – I sat first chair through high school. My part was down pat. I spent every waking moment in the band room – I skipped gym class to be there…I still got a B in gym class – I have no idea how I pulled that off, I never made one class. Regardless, scatter brained as I was – I still am…and as you can tell, I am completely off point. I will try yet again to explain where I would see myself as a free-lance writer…I see myself at times, sitting at my desk at home, drinking too much coffee so that my caffeine buzz makes me type like  a fiend – faster than I type already – I’m in my red fuzzy slippers and my favorite sweat pants. I have peace and quiet because my husband is at work – he is awful at occupying himself…and always has to have the TV on, even when he’s not watching…I write all day and I have my sticky notes stuck all over the place with my ideas, I have pencils holding my hair back in case I need them – in good scatter-brained, geeky fashion, of course (I’m a self-proclaimed geek, have I mentioned that as well?) Although, going back to high school, it wasn’t so self-proclaimed….and it did a lot of damage to my adolescent self-esteem – though now, as a 29 year-old woman – I do feel quite proud of my geeky-ness. The second setting I see myself in, also includes too many sticky notes, a desk, a laptop and pencils in my hair…however, I’m in a cubicle (would love an office, but I can’t aim too high too quickly) – I’m surrounded by other cubicles, so much quiet it’s almost eerie and the faint sound of many keyboards clicking out fantastic pieces of the written word – masterpieces that will surely be published…in something – a magazine, a newspaper – it’s anybody’s guess!! Of course, much coffee is consumed, though the fuzzy red slippers must be kept at home.

I am finding myself all too consumed by this writing – I was a tad bewildered and I must admit intimidated by the blank screen with the very black, very angry looking curser blinking back at me…teasing me – daring me to write something great. Great, I cannot promise….perfect English, most certainly not…..a feeling of release to finally allow my inner dialogue a place to reside….this is a definite yes.   

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