Wednesday, July 28, 2010
What inspires you?
It does me.
Take this clip, for example. Now, Josh Groban isn't everyone's cup of tea. But, friends of the blank page, this song just sends me...
It burrows into the deepest folds of my heart. It infuses me with conflicting waves of euphoria, joy, love, passion, nostalgia, sadness, regret... yearning for what was and for what could have been.
I lost the most important person in my life recently. Above everything else, someone who was my best friend.
Don't cry for me, Argentina. One day I'll open up a couple of veins and bleed it all out here. Suffice it to say for now that I had it coming.
Maybe you have to be Italian to really appreciate the lyrics. I was so moved by it that I wanted to share it with the world, so I added English subtitles... and listened to it until my eyes and heart were drained. The translation may not be spot on, but it represents what I felt listening to this for the first time.
So, how do I get that kind of emotion on the page?
How do you get to Carnegie Hall?
Writing is all about practice.
It's taking that spark -- that joy or pain, that whatever it was that moved you -- showing up on the blank page and just doing it -- over and over again.
Of course, it helps if you have a little talent. Okay, lots of it. But, only by actually sitting there with your writing implement, day after painful day, can you develop a voice that will be heard above all the cacophony.
Even after doing this "thing of ours" for decades, I still have my doubts and lots and lots of room for improvement.
But, what inspires you, fellow soldiers of the story brigade?