The creative process is different for every writer. Much like DNA, we all seem to have a unique signature in how the words form inside of us and find their way to the proverbial blank sheet of paper. Whether it is a over a couple of quiet beers down at a pub to pour out our emotions about a fresh new love or holed up in a dark cocoon of a room channelling the anguish of abandonment, one common thread seems to be writing to process life experiences.
I have known for a long time (since the age of 12 in fact) that an integral part of my creative process is the concept of "letting go". My dreams and nightmares are a part of my process. The feelings associated with something I experience get put into the sausage factory that is my brain, churn about consciously and sub-consciously to produce both abstract and concrete ideas that form the genesis of the plots to my poems, my short stories and now my novels.
Because a fair chunk of what I write is in the fantasy/science fiction genre, often the story produced is distant from the original experience. Beyond the simple "the names have been changed to protect the innocent". Often I will even forget what the original experience was that inspired the idea. To this day I cannot remember what Barney the giant spider who thought it was a cat represented in my every day experience.
Sometimes it seems like my creative writing is an elaborate form of journalling (though I clearly journal too given this blog exists), just a tool to help me process my feelings about my experiences. Especially the negative ones. And it seems my writing product is so much better when there is some hurt bubbling away inside of me that needs to be surgically extracted that only words as the instruments can do.
But then I realise that the hurt is only a trigger in my creative process. It helps me to let go of any pain, by allowing me to lose myself in the "what if" creative ideas that grow from the piece of me that has been removed. The piece that sits in a petrie dish and sprouts forth into something new and different and better. A bit like the bacterial swab cultures that form into intricate patterns with a blast of heat in a pathology lab. Beautiful nature. Exquisite art. (Deadly too but that is by the by.)
I have been inspired the last year and the last few weeks in particular. The combination of my poor health and someone that I believed was a friend who, it seems to me, has abandoned me (to become lost in love with another soul that needs him to be a knight in shining armour). Delivering my latest source of emotional inspiration. I cannot do much about losing this friend. I have even found that complaining to him about it simply drives him further away.
All I can do is immerse myself in my writing. Letting go.