On writing from the heart…of a place

SiskiyouSchoolSpring2014_205Last summer, I was asked to contribute to a series called Writers on Writing, or (WoW!) at First Day Press. (On a related note, look for a short story by me in the print volume of the journal, fall 2014 edition. It’s a beautiful glossy, and you won’t be sorry to have it, even if you decide my story stinks.)

For WoW, I was asked to touch upon inspiration. How I write, why I write…anything I’d like, really. At the time, I was in the middle of an early first draft, so it was easy for me to identify what inspires me to sit down everyday. Place.

Here’s an excerpt:

All I need to get started is a pin in a map, a Google street view, a memory stirred by sound or scent. For whatever reason, landscape is easy for me to lay.

This makes sense to me: the drive to write creatively comes from some place gut-wrenching for all of us.  As much as I’d like to protect my inspiration behind hard knuckle, I carry this love of place below the rib cage between belly and soul, tucked under soft tissue where the breath is knocked out in one hard oomph when the punches land. For me—introverted, drawing always from within instead of reaching out—the places I know and love and hate and remember draw the most visceral reactions.

See the whole piece, and check out the rest of the WoW series by writers and bloggers.

Photo by Byron.