Friday, April 20, 2012

The Duality of Currency

I've heard it said that love and hate are not opposites; rather, they are two sides of the same coin--passionate emotions driven by a deep connection to another. Hate is the photographic negative of love. The same image, turned inside out.

They all came up tails.
Lately, I've felt like creatively empty, like my well's run dry. This doesn't frighten me anymore. In the beginning of my writing days, this feeling made me fear I'd run out of words, that I had nothing left to say. Now, I know that isn't true. Losing the creative urge is part of my process, I've learned. It happens in the midst of every single project. My coping technique has been to ride it out. The phase will pass. The words will return.

This morning, I felt that old familiar burn in my chest. My heart is squeezing like it does when it wants to let something out. When I'm in writing mode, this is when my forearms start tingling and my fingers get restless, and I go running for the keyboard. That hasn't happened yet. It's close. I can feel it coming, but it's not here yet.

What's happening is the negative of creative output. It's the same compulsion turned inside out. It's the other side of the creative coin. Instead of pouring myself out, I want to be filled. I need something to reach out and affect me. I need to experience, to receive. I want the catharsis of being profoundly touched by the creativity of another.

If I could, I'd go on a pilgrimage to art museums. I'd camp in a gallery. I'd surround myself with music. I'd spend a week in a theater. I'd drink it all in, all the art and beauty I could take. I'd glut myself on it, bathe myself in it. I'd wallow in it until my heart says stop, you're ready.

That's when I'll see the other side of the coin, the other view of the picture.

7 comments:

  1. You sound so comfortable in your writer skin. <3

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  2. So true! You put this feeling is such an understanding way, and so eloquently. Yes, I know that urge well, and the void. I usually write through the void, but oftentimes it means writing journalistically with something freelance, letting th4e fiction set. Lately, I've been burning to write my fiction, and have to fight for the time . . . while promoting the book already written! Hard balance. Thanks for putting this into such beautiful perspective.

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  4. Your words ring true...I'm almost there myself. While on assignment about something completely unrelated, I discovered a family I just had to meet. A family on a quest.

    I love when serendipity nibbles on my ear.

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  5. "If I could, I'd go on a pilgrimage to art museums. I'd camp in a gallery. I'd surround myself with music. I'd spend a week in a theater. I'd drink it all in, all the art and beauty I could take...." Julia Cameron calls these outings "artist's dates." I think they're wonderful. They take you out of your internal world and fill you with beauty from the outside so that you have new material to synthesize and make your own.

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