Erin's Everyday Thoughts

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Perspective in Writing

There are instances of raw perspective in each person’s life. A friend dies. A family member goes ill. A natural disaster destroys a home. And for a time (an hour? day? year?), everything seems to come sharply into focus. What matters is that person you love. What matters is your own mortality, and everything you’ve yet to accomplish. What does not matter is the hundred other small things that usually matter—a prejudice, a pair of boots you want to buy, a misspoke phrase that a friend may have taken the wrong way. Who cares? you say. There is so much more to life that is so much more important.

I sometimes wonder how it would effect my writing if I could hold onto those moods after a disaster has passed. Perhaps I would delve into an unproductive melancholy. Perhaps I would be opened to a brand new world of possibility …


  • Those feelings are fleeting, and perhaps for good cause. But when you write and settle into your "zone," you can recall them with great clarity and use the emotion to drive your work.

    By Blogger Theresa Williams, at 2:17 AM  

  • Erin, this is so weird. I haven't checked into your blog for a while, and now I see what your topic is. Check out mine - the one I posted yesterday. Weird indeed!


    PS - I think Theresa is right. When you settle into a quiet place, to write or merely to think, it is not unusual for the sensations to come flooding back. Living in the now does not preclude it.

    By Blogger Vicky, at 11:10 AM  

  • I have a couple of thoughts in response to your entry. Perhaps they are diametrically (SP) opposed, perhaps not.

    One is that we have an emotional budget for such events, and cannot maintain that mood. It is impossible.

    The other is on a daily basis (and I get this from the intro to Becker's _Denial of Death_, and I'm paraphrasing) we need to cultivate the awareness of our own death. It seems to me this latter thought allows us to be open to each moment having a brand new world of possibility.

    Your entries always give me something to think about!

    By Blogger beths front porch, at 11:36 AM  

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    By Blogger James Baker, at 11:46 AM  

  • Erin, I enjoyed receiving the postcard from Florida! What fun! I made a trip to Vermont this summer (itz in de blog). Miss you. When you gonna post here again?

    By Blogger Theresa Williams, at 4:12 AM  

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