Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Creative Juice

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...

Therapy.

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.

Yes, I found this in a fortune cookie last week. Best. Fortune. Ever.




8 comments:

Daniel W. Powell said...

That blank page and blinking cursor have missed you just as much, Aaron. Time to maybe spend some time, the three of you...

Aaron Polson said...

I know... It will happen. Someday.

Alan W. Davidson said...

I have wondered about your writing too, Aaron. Without a doubt the words will return to you. I look forward to witnessing where they will lead you (and the readers).

Happy fourth, sir.

Doug Murano said...

I apologize in advance for how hokey this will probably come off, but I'm a hokey guy, so there you have it. Simply put, I believe the world needs writers like you, Aaron. From what I've read of your work, you always strike for the truth. You don't play games. You acknowledge life's darkness without allowing it to define the stories. Here's to hoping you will find your voice again, because you have the kind of talent--and creative sensibility--that can change lives for the better.

Anthony Rapino said...

This post rings true for me. I never call it therapy either, but I know it is. If writing was ever anything more than just therapy for you (as I know it must have been), you'll find your way back to it. No rush, but it will happen.

I've never been about forcing myself to write every day. In fact, I may not have written anything in nearly as long as you at this point. I trust that when I need to, and when I'm ready to, I will, and you will too.

Danielle Ferries said...

I hope the words do return to you when they're ready.

Danielle Ferries said...

PS Love those fortune cookies.

Cate Gardner said...

Writing will find you again.