Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Imagining Life's Coming Attractions
In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on. (Robert Frost)
I love spring. A time when the spring peepers make music so loud that even with the windows closed I can hear them trying to convince some other peepers to be their dates. I like how one week the trees are winter bare and then a couple of weeks later leaves are waving in the breeze. I like how flowers start popping up out of the ground like magic as soon as the sun begins to warm the ground and then seem to grow tall overnight.
I especially like those flowers that no one planted. That are just there. The wildflowers Mother Nature herself sowed in the woods and fields. Every year they show up again. Sometimes they spread out into bigger patches. Sometimes they shrink back and cling tightly to their little bit of earth and wait for a better year. But they keep blooming without fail. Flowers like the Dutchman's Breeches up above.
They seem to be proof that, as Robert Frost says, life goes on. And if you look at my picture really closely, you'll see that even as I was taking that photograph, life was going on. A spider, that I surely didn't even notice, was building a web and using one of the blooms as an anchor post. It was paying me no mind. I was paying it no mind. We were just each in our own spring mode.
Life is going on in my work in progress too, but sometimes it seems to be still frozen in the winter of my mind instead of springing forth in the right words.
Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life's coming attractions. (Albert Einstein)
That's where my story is. In my imagination and I'm trying to tell it so that you might make it come to life in your imagination. While Albert Einstein isn't talking about fictional lives, the same can hold true for my characters. If I can imagine it, I can preview their lives' coming attractions. But I have to write it moment by moment or more aptly, scene by scene. Each scene has to flow into the next until the story is told. Because even in a fictional story, life goes on. My story might succeed if I can pull out the right succession of moments.
Life is a succession of moments, to live each one is to succeed. (Corita Kent)
In real life, we can't pick and choose among the moments that make up our stories. We have to live the ones that come to us. But we sometimes can preview our lives by imagining what is to come.
When I was a kid, I imagined myself married and a mother. I remember the moment when I looked forward to that life with a certain surety. Then I also imagined myself a writer. With a dog by my side. Lots of things have happened that I didn't know to imagine, but those things I imagined true.
What are some of the things you've imagined that have come to pass in your life?
Thanks for reading. Check back Sunday for a real treat. I'm having a guest post from someone who writes about her grandmother's struggles with dementia. A beautiful story I know will touch your heart.