The brushstrokes of my mind are as varied in intensity, depth and width, as the full spectrum of colors by which an artist paints. If anyone were to carefully analyze my mind, I’d dare say, their eyebrow would raise.
This mind that is mine, is the only playing field I know. Its madness is as familiar as its kindness. Sitting here on my deck; Mac on lap: wine to left; stereo thundering to the right – my writer’s mind pulls up its well-worn chair and thinks only the thoughts it knows how to think – deep, plunging, passionate and humorous. In doing so, not a moment passes that I do not appreciate everyone who has decided to listen. Thank you.
I spent the week at the NYC Book Expo. Russia was the featured country, or so I was told. There to see a friend, it also gave me a chance to absorb the side of the industry for which I’ve spent the last three years avoiding. During the last week, I met a Kismet friend, saw a mind numbing amount of false smiles, renewed a romance, took a risk that was far out of my comfort zone, listened to the hotel alarms ring with fervor in the wee hours of the night after my friend accidentally pushed the emergency button on the elevator, sipped espresso in the Catskill Mountains, daydreamed about the one I love, drove too fast on winding roads, sat in traffic for an obscene amount of time, winced at the desperation in the eyes of many a writer, felt my soul cringe at the emptiness amongst many, not all, but many publishing companies, contemplated cutting the final tie with the one I love, bought t-shirts in Time Square, noticed my cellphone dies rapidly once set on ‘navigate’, met countless people, barreled down 34th street in a cycle rickshaw in the rain, decided I will give my love more time, visited my psychic, managed to elude the police in five states while driving un-mercilessly fast, then came home to hugs from my two children and my beautiful white boxer. And once home – I couldn’t wait to write again.
Everyone is on a journey. It is personal, singular and intimate to only them. Its significance, if known, is kept tight to the breast. And everyone decides what is of value to them. It is based upon their own guidance system, their own guidelines and rules. I write not for fame, and not for money. I write because there is an artist that lives within. And upon their canvas is a story about to be told. I am continually the scribe assigned to dictate all that I see. I mention this because nothing snuffs out my writer’s fire, nothing makes me set down my brush faster than exposure to the industry. What I knew before, I still know now, if possible, I will do best as a writer with two degrees of separation.
As we look back at our life. Often it is the little moments that bring about the biggest smile and the deepest emotional impact. Driving at midnight while the radio scanned what few channels were available, settling after numerous rounds on a song by John Mellancamp, is a warm memory for me from the trip. Everything about that singular, short moment, felt soft. The moment accomplished nothing toward my professional success, except that it eased my spirit and fanned the fire that makes me want to breathe each and every day. As life swoops up and down, it is that sweet spot in between, when the face softens and the music is just right, that the road is allowed to finally take us steadily toward where we are meant to go.