Facing the blank screen or page is easier some days than others. Sometimes I can be philosophical about it – reminding myself that many who came before me faced a similar tyranny each morning. There is some comfort in that. Other times I can dismiss that vast expanse of white by telling myself that I have better things to do, other tasks to which I need to attend. Surely anything is better than facing that page, the cursor blinking up at me expectantly, and my thoughts just muddled enough that I can’t pull a single solid idea out of them! Half the time is spent with fingers poised on the keyboard and the other half with my head cupped in my hands, like holding it will inspire it to give up an idea or two. When I can’t take it any longer, I often just begin to type – two words, then two more…. often I can conjure up drivel that way. And sometimes…. sometimes I write crap til I hit a vein, and then I’m off and running. I live for those moments, but more often than not, it is a solitary effort of excruciating proportion sitting here, trying to force the thoughts and the words behind them.
Sometimes I fantasize…. what my life would be like if I wasn’t a writer. What if I was just Ruth, and I woke up as her each day and she wasn’t a writer. Then what? Precisely. Then what. But the truth is that I am a writer. Like we all must breathe air, I must write. It’s how it is. There is no what if. Think about it. If we don’t breathe air…. then what? Exactly!
Then there are those times…. the ones I live for….when my mind is on fire with inspiration, when magic flows from the heavens into my head, and out through my fingers, spilling like blue-black ink onto the keyboard, times when I can create a mood, a world, a word picture worthy of sharing. My ideas and my ability to put them on paper connect me to the world, and creativity is so electric and charged in me that I can give birth to a piece of writing that even takes my own breath away. Rare and elusive moments, those, but they are magnetic enough to keep calling me back to this place, to my office, to my desk. They are enough to rouse me out of sleep in the early hours of the day, when the world sleeps around me, to face the dark and the still outside my cozy home and
inside my slumbering mind. So here I am, once again, early morning, blank page… in my glory.