Sunday, September 17, 2006

A few weeks ago, I was listening to Fresh Air on NPR. the author of a book called The Discomfort Zone was being interviewed. He said that among his literary circle (he was an MFA and I think he lived in New York, so he had a literary circle) he almost felt guilty tht he had a relatively normal, happy childhood.

That statement gave voice to something I have been struggling with. My childhood was nice and normal and happy. My life in general has been nice and normal and relatively happy. How can I write if I wasn't abused, or if I didn't belong to a gang (though I did have a "protector" who was in a gang. He's a farm now, which gives me no end of amusement.), or if I didn't have a drug problem (unless the fact that Tylenol gives me nightmares is a drug problem)? What can I say of worth?

There seems to be a school of thought that says that true creativity is born of pain. I even think I agree with that school. But I don't think you have to be miserable all the time in order to write fiction of literary value (or paint a respected painting, or whatever).

I think that pain is inside all of us. It's like a chasm, and from that chasm flows a stream of creativity. I think it's God's way of letting something good come from bad, letting light flow from darkness. It's redemption of the bad stuff in our lives.

I don;t think that will ever be a prevailing theory of creativity, but it works for me.

Just a thought on this absolutley miserable day (car issues. I need to learn how to ride a bike)

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