Grit is the stuff that eventually becomes the pearl nestled with the oyster in its shell.
For human “grit” to be able to eventually be turned into a pearl, there requires a certain amount of compassion. Jennifer Louden, in her prompt at yesterday’s opening of Tracking Wonder’s December online adventure, Quest2015, invited us to consider that “grit without compassion is just grind…” and to envision what would be the most fun to create in the coming year, and how could grit and compassion help bring it about?
First of all it is a good reminder, that writing can be fun.
Sometimes I get caught up in the oh-so-important seriousness of it all; having to force myself to put my butt in the chair when I don’t particularly feel like it, or start to get bright-shiny-thing distracted by one thing or another; worrying if what I’m writing has no value except to me, my family and my ever-supportive writing group, will I ever get anything besides polite rejection emails; when editing sometimes feels just like I am treading over the same ground, again and again, with no end in sight…..yeah, gritty stuff.
Compassion – self-compassion especially – helps keep the grit from turning to grind. And being open to wonder is a great deterrent to grind (thank you Jeffrey Davis). And the two of these keep the heart and mind and body open to fun and play, and especially to the adventure that is being a writer.
So. What fun am I going to create in 2015? For starters, I am going to reclaim a studio space that for a long time had been losing the battle with it turning back solely into a garage/storage space. A leaking skylight has been replaced with a larger one (more natural light and bigger view of the sky!) and the moldy insulation and drywall gone. Then comes the gritty task of sorting and purging through years of stuff – and not just my own, but also some of my father’s things that I brought into my home after he died earlier this year. This is where the compassion kicks in – both the tough-love type that understands but still demands a purging and clearing of space, and the softer type that understands if I decide I need to find space for all his many sketchbooks, watercolors, and photographs.
What I will get for this effort, however, will be a pearl indeed – a space where I can spread out a bit and create; put big pieces of paper on the wall and make brainstorms with myself, story-eggs and character maps to my heart’s content.
But not just a writing space, but also once more I will have a drawing and painting space. This side of me long-dormant (but bubbling like on a personal back burner) is about to be allowed to reawakened. And that, for me, is a fun and exhilarating notion. It won’t take away from my writing, but will (I hope) enhance it by the simple firing of more of my creative jets.
And, it appears I have started a blog.