It has been a long time. Nothing is coming. My mind is a blank. More so than usual. There are times when the words flow. They may not hang together well, but they flow. During November several years ago they came like Niagra when I wanted to prove to myself I could write 50,000 of them to be a part of the NaNoWriMo phenomenon. That is no easy feat. I did complete a little more than 50,000 to get my certificate of completion.
The idea is to write a novel in 50,000 words in that time period. A novel? Did I complete a novel? Not exactly. I provided some activity for several characters. It took place in a frame of time. But a novel? Nope. When I got to the word requirement I simply stopped. My characters were in the process of descending a circular stairway. They had torches in hand above their heads. The stone walls were wet with condensation. It poured down onto the stone steps. And there I left them. Action? If you call moving them from one cardboard place to another action, well then, yes. Were the characters well defined? Mmmm, not so much. Was there a specific goal to be reached? I don't even remember so it could not have been tugging me along. In the end it became a race to complete a set number of words in a set time period. Story be hanged.
I still have it sitting locked away in my computer. I tried reading through it one year. It was pretty much drivel. There were some parts I thought quite good. Not only that but I was surprised I had written something that I liked, meaning those parts just mentioned.
I learned quite a bit. One must have a beginning, a middle and an end. Some can just write one sentence and go onto the next and end up with a novel, but I'm not one of them. I learned that I would need a plan. An outline would be a good tool to set down that plan. When I tried to come up with a story that could be outlined, my mind became as vacant as ..., well as vacant as that. Plan? Characters? A reason these characters have to exist? Not easy questions. What is life? That question is just as easy for me to answer.
Though I have been around for 65 years, I am not as bright as I used to believe myself to be. I caught on to things quickly in school. Memorization and logic, to a certin extent, saved me on many occasion during those days. I could always parrot ideas, but an individual thought born of my mind filled with facts? Not so much. With age and experience I still find my mind's ability to come up with a new idea merely the rehash of old. I'm not sure where new and refreshing ideas come from.
For me I wonder if the time for that is past. It's like the question, What is life? We ask that in our youth thinking we can provide an answer. After decades that question still lingers with no real answer. I always said that at death the answer would be evident immediately. If there is an afterlife we will know then. If not, it makes no (know) difference.
I've meandered in my beliefs throughout my life's journey. I have gone from childhood belief to atheist to agnostic without adhering to any for long. My childhood belief wins over all because I cannot believe that this world we live in can come from nothing. So? Was it magic that brought something from nothing? What we call magic would be God's domain of creativity.
If someone from the dark ages were to visit our world, everything around him would have resulted from magic in his mind. He would have no other explanation. In similar fashion we have attempted explanations for something that is beyond our minds. We simply don't know by rational thought. The more we learn the more complicated things become. How does it all fit together and continue to function? Who amongst us has a brain that can ever take it all in and explain it? It's a mystery.
I like what Jesus said. Our Father in heaven. A loving Father. How to explain the mayhem and destruction? I cannot. How to describe the beauty and wonder of this world? I can only do so on my knees. It is so overwhelming and so wonderful there can never be an explanation in human terms.
Write a story? I try. I haven't succeeded thus far. It's a matter of faith. In myself. In my God. When that faith is stronger than fear of failure, perhaps then I will be free enough to write a cohesive story.
As Mrs. Seabrook, my Latin teacher, said: If at first you don't succeed, suck corn.
Let me begin... It was a dark and stormy night. Agnes threw the Walther PPK .038 into the Atlantic. Then she lifted the body over the side. The splash was not heard due to the howling winds.