I have mused, and mused lately over the source of my writer's block, and have yet to discover it, but I have discovered some interesting things along the way--things about love.
One of the reasons why I started writing Harry Potter fanfiction in the first place was to try and work out for myself the real meaning of love, life and death (which I think was actually Rowlings reason for writing the series in the first place, but that is only my personal opinion based on things she has said in interviews, etc.). How they intertwine, how they are related to one another. No small assignment! You can see these themes threading all the way through "The Alchemist", "Once" and "Solace".
But, I think the real question I was asking myself, at its core, was, does love give life enough meaning. Is love enough to imbue life with divine purpose, or is life simply meaningless. It is so fleeting and brief, and the older we get, the faster it seems to fly, the more we seem to lose those dear to us. Most of us live simple lives, and I think it is fair to say that the majority of us are not going to be famous in any major way, or even leave anything concrete here that will be remembered after our deaths, so it is natural to ask the question - "Why are we here then? What is life really for?" Could love be that reason?
It's been quite a personal journey for me the last three years. I have lost several people dear to me to death. I have had relationships fall apart and mend, only to begin to unravel again. I have had new loves begin. I've had everything I thought I believed about life and love shaken to its very roots. The person who started writing "The Alchemist" in the winter of 2007 no longer exists. She is gone, probably forever. The girl who wrote "Once" in 2008 is gone too. Even the person who wrote "Solace" only a few brief months ago is gone.
There are things I thought I knew or was discovering about love when I began writing those stories, that just seem silly and trite now. They don't exactly seem like lies, but more like they are far too simple. The more I live, the more I lose, the more I love, the more unknowable love seems to get--the more mysterious and numinous. And I think that is the way with anything worth knowing. The old adage "The older you get the more you realize how little you really know" really holds true.
I think that perhaps the writer's block comes from the fact that I have finally, through one relationship in particular, come to realize that love really is a mystery. A beautiful mystery, but a mystery all the same. It is all things and it is nothing. It is pleasure and it is pain. It is sweet and it is bitter. It is calm and it is fiery. It is completely illogical, impractical and instinctual (hard things for me to embrace, being a person who prides herself on being logical, practical and living from the head more than the gut). But that unknowability is what makes it wonderful and worth seeking.
But how does a person put words to something so ethereal? I feel that all the world's greatest poets only scraped the very surface of love's true nature, and the words that poured from their pens were so much more profound than anything that I could ever have written. If centuries of writers, artists, playwrites and poets have not been able to unwrap loves mysteries, then how can I think that I ever will.
But perhaps this is one of those things that is more about the journey, the search, the adventure than it is about the destination. If it is true that we read to know we are not alone, then I think that as a writer, all we need do is write honestly and from our true soul about these issues, which have been at the core of humanity since the first human learned to transform thought to language, and we will somehow connect to our reader through that great universal ocean of common longing.
I fear though, that sometimes that is easier said than done. There is a deep seated fear attached to really delving deep enough into one's soul to drag out the more complicated and painful aspects of love, whether in your life or on the page.
Truth, no matter what you believe that to be, is never born painlessly. It is torn from you wrenchingly, and slams into you like a truck when it is revealed. It breaks you, in other words, and it is only when you begin to pick up the pieces and put yourself back together that you really realize the value in it.
Love--real love is like truth, I think. It destroys as it creates and creates as it destroys. Love, if it is real at all, makes you see the truth about yourself, and you have two choices: you can stay and suffer that pain, face your true self, break into a million pieces so that you can come back together again, or you can run, and move on to something more comfortable, something easier that allows you to remain as you were.
Staying is worth it, it seems. or so I am learning. But the place I am at in this moment, is so difficult to explore with words because it is all instinct, feeling, passion. Perhaps that is why I am drawn more to visual mediums, but even those seem to fail me. My old dusty piano is starting to look awfully tempting. Perhaps music is truly the language of the soul!
Anyway, as you can tell from this long and rambling journal of nothingness, words continue to evade me, and I do apologize to anyone who watches me for my fanfiction. I have no way of telling you when I might pick that up again. My first priority is of course ~Nynaeve-3
's kiriban fic, and after that the prize fic for the Snapely Contest all over at DeviantArt, but other than that, I have no idea when I will pick up the fannish pen again, or even if I will. Here's hoping!