I haven't written a word of fiction in more than three months. Not. One. Word.
Do I have your attention? Good.
I've used writing as therapy over the past six years. I started a year after Max was born, one of the hardest years of my life. Aimee spent two stints in the hospital that year and we struggled with balancing medication and therapy and workload and home life... When I started writing, I wasn't sure what direction it might take.
Monsters started appearing in my stories. Monsters and strange situations and Twilight Zone-esque plots. I embraced the weirdness, wrote stories about hotels with shifting rooms, doors to "other places" in the basements of a small Kansas town, a wife who morphed into a new person every morning...
I never called it therapy--it just became therapy. I wrote through my demons, my fears and anxieties about what had happened/was happening with my wife and family. With fiction, I controlled a little sliver of reality--the sliver I invented. I never called it therapy and I never really thought about it, either. It just was.
I haven't written a word of fiction in more than three months. I haven't wanted to--
On Sunday night, a good friend said, "You might not want to revisit those demons."
That sounds true. I hadn't thought about writing just like that--demons I hadn't wanted to revisit. My stories gave words to so many doubts and fears, and now I'm living in a different world, a world with different demons. I'm using "demon" as a metaphor--and we all have them. Doubts. Fears. I've learned different demons need a different kind of exorcism. I've always used creative pursuits to wrestle with mine. My summer screen printing and book binding classes have been very therapeutic. Once upon a time, I wanted to be an art therapist. I know why. I know why...
As for writing, I hope it's not gone, but I'm not going to seek out trouble just to stir those creative juices. Let it come as it comes.