Thoughts of the Day

The Mind is a Terrible Thing…

I have this thing with writing. It’s a love/hate thing. It’s a good/bad thing. It’s that thing where you sometimes would rather stick the pen in your eye then stick it to paper. It’s also that thing that puts the blood back in your body after you’ve already lost so much. It flows through the tubes and through your veins. It’s the restarting of your heart.

I have this thing with writing. It’s those dreams that come to you in the dead of night, jerking you awake, only to slip silently away. It’s the moment in the early morning where the words are all there is. Where they’re all you want them to be.

In my mind, every small popcorn kernel is deafening. Popping up when I want them and popping up when I don’t. Exploding when the lights are off and when the shower is running.

When I’m not writing I’m reminded of the things I want to forget and the things I don’t want to hear. And when I am writing, I’m reminded that the mind is a terrible thing…to waste.

 

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Daily Post Challenges · Story Time · Thoughts of the Day

Those Who Risk, Win.

On Monday, I went to see Joss Whedon and Mark Ruffalo speak as part of the Directors Series at Tribeca Film Festival.

There was a point where Joss started talking about how, years after Buffy, he finally realized that he was writing about himself. That he was, in fact, Buffy the Vampire Slayer. He realized that all of the emotions Buffy experienced and what she went through came from somewhere deep within. And it
wasn’tlarge_joss-whedon-mark-ruffalo-1 until it was over that he was finally able to understand.

He said the same thing happened when he was writing the character of Bruce Banner/ The Hulk for The Avengers. The character of Bruce Banner spends much of his time trying to prevent The Other Guy (i.e. The Hulk) from emerging and taking over. It’s something that he will have to learn to cope with for the rest of his life. In the 3rd act of The Avengers, Bruce joins up with the rest of the team as they’re about to take on an army of Chitari. Captain America turns to Bruce and says something along the lies of: “Dr. Banner, now would be a really good time to get angry.” And Bruce simply responds with: “That’s my secret, Captain. I’m always angry.” Joss said that one of the reasons he was so proud of that line from Bruce was because it made him realize, that once again, he was writing about himself. And that he is, in fact, always angry.

As I was listening to him talk about this, I began to realize something too. When I’m writing particular characters, they always seem to either be angry or sad. And if, like Joss, I’m writing about myself, then maybe, I too, am always angry or sad.

The anger I can get on board with. I do believe that a lot of the time, I am angry. But that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Anger can drive you. It certainly drives my writing. It takes me to places that I never thought I could go. And If I’m being honest, anger gets me some really great dialogue.

The sadness, however, I’m not so fond of. But sadness is a part of life and sad things happen all the time. So why shouldn’t I write about them? But if I really think about it, if I actually dig deep, I feel as though I am sad. Though about what, I’m not entirely sure. But what I find is that when I write sad characters, I feel better on the inside. I get those emotions out and project them into something I can make positive. Something I can be proud of.

Joss said that, to him, writing is one of the best things in life. He loves the writing process and he gets so much out of it. He discovers what he’s capable of and what brings out his emotions. He said he was once writing something so powerful that as he was writing, he found that he was sobbing.

When I’m not [writing], I remember that I hate myself. – Joss Whedon

The degree of honesty and candor to which he spoke, was truly awe-inspiring. To be able to have that lens into one’s own self is nothing short of immaculate. And the fact that he shared it with a room full of strangers and continues to share it through his writing is one of the reasons he inspires me.

That’s what I want from my writing. I want to feel that catharsis that comes from simple words on the page. Not just words that dig deep inside myself and reach my soul but words that actually came from me. Words that came from my own heart and my own soul. Like Joss, I love writing. It brings me a joy unlike any other. And it feels like it’s what I’m meant to be doing. And maybe I am sad or angry. Or both. But even so, I know that I can take those emotions and do something with them. And hopefully by doing so, I can bring a little solace to other people and maybe to myself, as well.

Writing about yourself is risky. It’s opening yourself up to criticism and judgement. It’s showing your wounds and most of the time you’re not sure if doing so will heal those wounds or just make thing fester. But I wholeheartedly believe, that at the end of the day, it’s a risk worth taking.

“If you’re not writing about yourself, why are you writing? Why would you not want to write something that’s important for you to say to people?” – Joss Whedon

Joss Whedon is a writer, director & producer known for Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Firefly and The Avengers. Mark Ruffalo is an actor and producer. 

Inspired by The Daily Post Discover Challenge, Risk

Poetic Bends

This Evening

2024This night is one for the taking. It’s in rare form this evening. The light shines down on us and illuminates our faces. We search but the shadows are no where to be seen. They hide from us and our image of effervesence. We’ve split this night wide open. There is no room for the darkness so it slinks away in fear and cowers in the corners. The cracks are no longer closing. They’re opening up to us instead. We step through them now and emerge on the other side. I take with me my hopes and dreams and leave my sins behind. I watch you do the same and wonder what your past was like. We’ve never spoken of days gone by and instead just think of today. This evening is one for the storybooks. We’re coming together, you and I, and all I know is this evening.