I’ve lately been inspired by Jonathan Carroll, who posts little written scenes — some from his books, some just off the cuff — to Medium on a daily basis.
This is one of my favorite things. When a writer can take a seemingly mundane moment and make magic out of it on the page. Carroll is a master at this. In a paragraph or two, he’ll have you smiling, laughing, crying, or wondering — about a profane woman on a bus or someone who just happens to always be in the way, or the guy who seems to talk in CAPITAL LETTERS.
Well, I’m in love with these little scenes. They make my day. So, today, I tried to share a scene of my own. And something happened…
I had no idea what to say. There were no stories there. It was then that I realized…
I haven’t been paying attention to my life enough lately.
Do you ever do this? Do you ever get up in your head for days at a time? Seems I’ve been doing this. I’ve been writing a lot about ideas and concepts. When I do this too much, I tend to lose touch with my day-to-day. I tend to step away from the movement of my life and I stop noticing things around me.
The lifeblood of a writer is to notice things and remark on them in one way or another. To tell it like it is, to notice something abstract about it, or to make up a fictional story that relates to it.
Well, apparently, I haven’t been paying attention. It struck me ths morning when I sat down to write this.
So, I went into writer mode. The rest of the day, I paid attention. At work, instead of walking past the forklift driver with my head in the clouds, I watched her. I stepped in her shoes behind that fork and wondered what was going on up there.
When I went on a walk with my daughter, I noticed families in our neighborhood hanging out together. What was going on? Did the mother have a particularly stressful day? Is she forcing that smile? Why?
I let myself live and notice my life. It was like returning to earth from a distant planet. It felt great to be home.
This is what I love so much about being a writer. Stories are everywhere. Think I cooked up a few for you. Coming soon.