I had a fight this weekend with a friend. Not to worry. We fight all the time. It has something to do with the dynamics of our personalities. In fact, I might be worried if we didn’t fight. By the end, he called me…actually called me…and accused me of ony fighting with him through text and claimed that my words wouldn’t have validity if spoken aloud. Only he didn’t say it quite so nice.
He’s wrong, of course. But I do like arguing via text. Despite what the experts say, there is a validity to the process. In fact, there are many people that I wish I could relate to only through text. Or email. Even chat.
Have you ever had a conversation with one of those people? You know the ones I’m talking about. You start to make a statement in an effort of conversation and they automatically know what you are going to say before the words tumble from your mouth. Then, they launch into a soliloquy based on what they think you’re going to say. I used to interrupt and finish. Now days, the fight is out of me and I just let them ramble on.
We’ve become a society of mind readers, guessing our way through conversations instead of listening. There is an arrogance that we know. Hearing…scratch that…listening has been buried in the garden where we hope understanding will just bloom. Listening takes effort. One must squash their belief that they know everything because humans are dynamic. They might even surprise you. You just have to give them a chance.
Now, it’s time for me to take my own advice. I’m not listening to my new character, Itsy, and have decided that I know what she’s thinking. There’s an art to closing your eyes and hearing what your character has to say. After all, it’s their story. I have a tendency to over think and interrupt the story, which might explain why it’s moving so slow. I want to get the words down right. Maybe even perfect. But there is beauty in the depths of the sub-conscience. It’s the prose that flows beneath the surface, like pebbles illuminated by the sun beneath the water’s ripples. That’s the prose I love.
We should all be a little more like Anais Nin who said, “I must be a mermaid, Rango. I have no fear of depths and a great fear of shallow living.” If only Itsy and I could have our conversations in text, I’d be forced to listen.
So I use the tool Write or Die by Dr. Wicked. It makes me write with abandon and minimizes my input. I love how the program screams at me when I take pause to think. The fact that it exists is comforting. I’m obviously not the only one who has this problem.
I, Amber Lynn, do hereby swear that I shall step aside and let Itsy tell her story. Even if it isn’t perfect the first time. I will not over think. I will not read Itsy’s mind. I will let her speak.
That said, I will continue to argue in text. Because we all like being heard.