Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Like Sands Through the Hourglass...

So having my wings clipped so to speak has put a damper on my writing. It’s just not that fun to sit and type with one hand when you are used to your fingers flying over the keys unbidden. In all honesty, I probably wouldn’t be a writer if I had lived in any other age but this age. I remember typewriters. Loved that rat-tee-tat-tat sound; hated the dread fear of whiteout and trying to self-marginalize the page. Yuck. As for pen and ink? Left-handers have to worry about smudged paper, and I always get hand cramps, so no to that either.

But anyway, I digress. I haven’t been writing, so I’ve been reading. A lot. Hello Kindle and its dangerous ease of downloading books!

Yesterday, for instance, I read a book in which the characters are thirty-two and thirty-four respectively. They go on to say that they are no longer twenty-something “kids” but mature adults. Yeah, okay, sounds fair. Adults. Except I realize that I’m thirty-six and, well, does that make me an adult? But, but, I can’t be!

Silly, I know, but that is where my mind took me. See, I know I am a grown woman, full on adult –okay, close to *gak* middle age. But I don’t _feel_ like an adult half of the time. I don’t feel like a kid either. I simply feel like…well…me! Is this denial? Healthy? Or were we really meant to think of ourselves in terms of age and numbers? Perhaps we were simply meant to just be. But the fact remains: I am getting older. We all are.

When I think of how a whole decade just passed by, like sand through my fingertips (or hourglass); how I’ve known my fellow blog ladies for years, not months; or how I used to sit around with my friends in high school and talk about the year 2010 like it was science fiction, it makes me a little afraid.

As a writer, it is my job to make my characters really live. No one wants to read about people who don’t really do anything. Yet in real life, living life to the fullest is never as easy as it sounds. I’m often awed at the wonderful, insane situations we put our characters in. But now I wonder if we the writers can learn something from them –how to live life to its fullest, how to channel the same courage and strength we imbue in our characters.

Perhaps you already do that. Perhaps you’re a walking Hemingway, just as interesting and wild in real life as your characters are on the page. Or perhaps you’re like me and save the bulk of your adventures for your characters. If it’s the latter, then perhaps it is time to wonder: if you can dream it up, can you live it as well?

-oh and twenty points for anyone who can finish the title sentence and tell me what it refers to. :)


  1. Something about the days of our lives, right? And I'm pretty certain it doesn't refer to the soap opera :-)
    Funny you should post about this, though - just yesterday I was thinking that I've already been *gasp* 30 for two months and... I remember Diana saying she wanted to have a novel written before she was 35; well, heck, not only did she write it, but look where she is now! That leaves me five years to find an agent and start getting published! Five years always sounds like a lot when you put it that way, but as you said, Kristen, it wasn't that long ago that were back in high school thinking of 2010 as some time faaar in the future. Gotta get cracking!
    Don't knock us lefties :-) Smudges or not, I prefer pen and paper! :-)

  2. So are the days of our lives - and I'm sure its more than the soap - but that's all I could think of!

  3. Deniz-- hello fellow lefty! :) Paper and pen, really? *g* I've never been comfortable writing that way. Bad hand form, I suppose.

    Eh, Diana is beyond us mere mortals, best we not try to follow her footsteps. And hey, you HAVE a book written. LOL. So really, you're ahead of the game.

  4. Heidi --nope, I'm that simple. It WAS a ref to the soap. LOL, and that stinking song got stuck in my head the whole day too!

  5. Hmm, since what I've been dreaming up involves a serial killing count, a loan shark who lets his fists do the talking, and various other unsavoury characters, I'm kinda glad I don't have to live it! LOL. I tend to think that the more exciting your life, would you actually have anything to write about? (apart from a riveting autobiography, that is). My life is so ho-hum normal, it's only in my imagination that the excitement and over-the-topness occurs .. but if that *is* your life already, where do you go from there? Hmm ...

  6. Oh, and if you ever think you're getting old, just think about me.