TIME OUT! Time to look at how we write, what we write and WHY WE WRITE! PJ Reece, author, speaker, writer of the Meaning of Life Blog, and inspiration to all of us in the Mazatlan Writer’s Group, writes about his process at http://www.pjreece.ca/blog/wordpress/category/blog/ PJ, author and adventurer, uses his Blog to invite us on a journey led by desire to the heart of the story. Like Garth Brooks who claims that
“Life is not tried, it is merely survived, If you’re standing outside the fire,”
PJ’s protagonists are those “who have to dance within the flame, who chance the sorrow and the shame, that always comes with getting burned.”
Garth Brooks and Jenny Yates, December 1993.
But wait. How connected is a writer to his protagonist? Is PJ proposing that author and protagonist enter the dark heart of the story together? And what about the reader? Just as my mind opened to the dimension of that idea, PJ tagged me to be next to answer the 4 questions posed on a Blog Tour—to have the next dance within the flame.
I worked at accumulating and keeping things most of my life—not at writing. But looking back, I realize there have been moments of transcendence that couldn’t be earned, made to happen, scheduled, or be deserved. Like Magic Doors, they are passed through, perhaps without being noticed. Called “insightful, spiritual, meaningful, transformative, or “peak” experiences, I decided to write about these “watershed moments”-yours, mine and ours, since they cross over the ordinary into another realm. How exciting is that!! Magic! This Blog called “Portals to the Unforgettable” is at www.susancarnes.worpress.com .You are reading it now. My other blog is about the healing power of creative expression. Go to http://www.skcarnes.com to find my paintings, books, and some poetry. If creativity has brought you healing, solace or joy, consider signing up and sharing.
What am I working on? Leaving my Midwestern farm life behind, I crossed the Continental Divide westward, even as I crossed the boundaries of guilt, shame and fear into a new life of risk. Discovering the pot at the end of the rainbow makes a great story and I am presently writing it. Yes, another novel! Although it is essentially my story and true from my point of view, I do digress, so a memoir it isn’t! But this new historical novel, nameless at present, is aiming at being a love story, a mystery, full of action, danger, regret, joy, you know, all the spices of life presented in my voice which I am presently honing on my blog. Do you like poetry that doesn’t make you feel ignorant, but wiggles in sideways, and calls out your understanding almost by accident? I hope so. I seem to use the Taro archetypes everyone relates to. Also, I am aware of being carried along. Sometimes, I just sit down and the words come. Then I get to rewrite and that is so much fun. It is like painting a picture, choosing the colors by what feels right.
- How does my work differ from others of its genre? I think I have spent so much of my life alone or in the company of animals that I cook up punch that is flavored by the wilderness, impassioned by stallions, mournful as the cry of a sheep stuck in the briars, has a touch of awesome like the Northern Lights, is barren and windswept and sometimes lush as a pool in the rainforest. Of course it is different, for it filters through me, and I am practiced at not fitting in, having long kept my own company. But to my astonishment, when I read my work to my Writers Group, they nod in understanding. Could it be my punch is made from waters we all tap into, like a deep-down brook that runs through us? Listen to John McCutcheon’s “Water From Another Time”, and you will discover this wellspring: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GUeEvMSlpFI
Why do I write what I do? I have this idea/dream that we are all on this ship together and looking at the passing scenery, but only from our own porthole. Now, when we share what we see, the view gets bigger. Maybe the word I should use is “compelled.” I am compelled to write it down, to share my view just as Garth Brooks has in this centermost stanza of his hit song, also quoted above.http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/garthbrooks/standingoutsidethefire.html
There’s this love that is burning
Deep in my soul
Constantly yearning to get out of control
Wanting to fly higher and higher
I can’t abide
Standing outside the fire
- How does my writing process work? I wake up in the night-sometimes at 2:00 sometimes at 5, and instead of going back to sleep, I get up and write. Then with daylight comes chores and obligations, but during the day things come to me and I jot down ideas to chew on. Sometimes, when I am out walking, I get a notion and it sort of marinates, but if it doesn’t go away, I have to write on it. Getting it out in words satisfies the muse, but so far, I hear her calling me onward over a new Continental Divide to the unknown. I have always loved exploring.
NEXT ON OUR BLOG TOUR:
An introduction to C.Michaels who joined our Mazatlan Writer’s Group, and soon began sharing her knowledge of self publishing and networking, all the while finishing her three suspense novels. She now writes a column for the Pacific Pearl along with her blog. Keeping the reader guessing, Michaels is currently writing a smart thought provoking novel, the first of a series, called Casual Women, in which Maddy encounters some merciless characters in Mazatlan, Sinaloa, Mexico. How will C.Michaels answer the 4 questions of the Blog Tour? Ahh-tune in for a revealing session with the empress of intrigue in one of Mexico’s most fascinating cities.
Order the Historical Novel by S.K. Carnes, The Way Back, recently released in all e-book stores. To find it on Amazon, go to http://bit.ly/SoldiersJourney