Where I Am

I have dedicated my last two blogs in Author (February 2 and February 3) and yesterday’s blog on No One Is Broken to the concept of unconditional love. And by love I don’t mean only one person’s love for another person, I mean love in all its manifestations – passion, curiosity, peace, forgiveness, joy, enthusiasm, humor, confidence, calm. In short, every good feeling we would ever want to experience. If anyone ought to know that love – or, more simply, what we feel – is unconditional, it is a writer. When I write I sit at my desk where, except for the sweep of the clock’s hand or the sound of traffic on the street outside my window, the conditions of my world remain essentially unchanged. And yet I can feel anything. I can feel excited or I can feel frightened; I can feel abandoned or supported; I can feel tragic or elated. I can feel the entire spectrum of human emotions, and all that changes is what I think, where I direct the light beam of my attention.

But oh, the rejection letters! Oh, the sales! Oh, my bank account! It’s all very well and good to sit alone at your desk, away from the bright lights and noises and opinions of the world and feel whatever you want to feel, but reality and all its jostling and requirements and disappointments is out there waiting. Writing happens in the sovereign kingdom of the imagination. Meanwhile, the sun will rise and set, markets will climb and fall, people will live and die no matter where we point our attention.

So true. But even though I prefer to write in the peace and stability of my office, I could write at a café, or a train station, or even the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. It wouldn’t be as easy as at my desk, but I could still do it. I could still pull my attention from two strangers’ conversation, from the train’s piercing whistle, from the shouts and urgency of commerce, and direct it toward the story I wish to tell. And once I had, I wouldn’t be at home, or in a café, or a train station or stock exchange, I would feel where the story was taking me, and that’s where I would be.


Write Within Yourself: An Author's Companion.

"A book to keep nearby whenever your writer's spirit needs feeding." Deb Caletti.

You can find Bill at: williamkenower.com

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