I Must Write, But I Have No Idea How To Write A Book.

by Chris Kamalski

I MUST WRITE

Creative explosion.

I have something to say.

A heart that is unraveling.

“Write about your pain.”

Start somewhere.

True self.

At peace.

Becoming whole.

Creativity oozes forth.

Do I have something to say?

Do I have anything worth saying?

Yes.

I must write.

Yes.

I must write.

(Free write during an Art Therapy workshop in October 2009)

I MUST WRITE, BUT I HAVE NO IDEA HOW TO WRITE A BOOK

My room is always cleaned just prior to beginning a massive creative undertaking. It’s as if the dust that pads my feet each day as I shuffle about my flat suddenly is dyed bright red and I will die without breaking out my lonely broom to shove it out the front door. Laundry suddenly grows in importance, the sink must be emptied, and my desk must be clear for creativity to burst forth.

Procrastination has always been a close friend of mine, punctuated by bursts of feverish effort that seem to produce things others are proud of, while I often remain at a loss as to what has been created, focusing on what could have been, or what was left out in the haste to meet a deadline, all the while dismissing the new life that is birthed from any effort at all.

And that is the point I am sloppily trying to make: Any effort at all is the key towards the life that is running around my head becoming actual, fantasy and dreams turning into reality and lived experience. So much of me prefers the former; after all, it is safe, perfect, and a place where I am in absolute control. Who can critique my internal world except for my own mind, and whatever degree to which I allow others a glimpse under the lid of my soul?

It is highly arrogant to scribble one’s thoughts on paper for others to benefit from. A certain amount of wisdom, life experience, failure, and perspective are necessary prior to actual publication of such gleanings. At least this is what resistance has whispered in my ear for years as I put off such yearnings, living a life devoid of attempting something this hard.

I am coming to realize however that the exact opposite is actually true. The epitome of arrogance (Read: selfishness at its most acute) is hiding from others what is coming to life within you. As I was jogging this morning, Erwin McManus thundered in my headphones, “Some dreams haunt you until you begin to live them.” I stopped cold in midstride, pausing my iPod, dumbstruck at the power of this simple idea. A dream will remain fantasy until I live it out, as if I act it into existence in some mysterious manner.

This is true of my vision for this book. I have no idea how to write a book. Sure, various manuscripts litter my shelves, but really, what are they other than a collection of how others have done something I must act into existence myself? I’m not always sure of what I want to say, and am certain that I am not entirely qualified to say anything at all.

And yet, I must write. Yes, I must write.

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