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A Hard Day’s Night

September 29, 2009

It’s been a long, long day.

My head hurts. My eyes are sore – the computer screen is killing me. There is this throbbing that sits heavily behind my eye sockets, feels like it’s nested in the middle of my head, a swollen rock of exhaustion. And then there is the pulsing of pain, thump…thump…thump… that even the glass of pinot grigio is not melting away. Arrghh.

I’m not writing to whine. I’m writing because I want to write. The act of my thoughts trickling out of my fingertips soothes me. It usually starts slow after too many hours of mechanical thinking. The brain is numb…it needs time to recover. Then it slowly switches gears. At first it’s just a few drops, then the droplets increase in frequency into a slow trickle, then faster, steadfastly it builds in volume, until it erupts into a stream of consciousness that just can’t be stopped. All I can do at this point is just to keep up with the flickering of my fingers on keys. Faster faster. It’s pure bliss. This is the stuff that feeds my soul. This must be what people call “the zone,” whatever that is (RE), and when I’m there nothing else matters, I lose all track of time and space. The context around me just melts away. I get tunnel vision, and it’s amazing.

I so wish I could write more now, but there is another task that I must finish tonight. There are still two more films I want to talk about from TIFF, both by Herzog. It’s been simmering in me for what feels like weeks, and then last night I found out about the Rogue School of Films while reading his website, and my world pretty much exploded. There is so much that I want to say. I know I will say them. Soon, when I’m coherent.

Lastly, for those of you reading this, I feel your presence. No, seriously. I’ve kept a diary for ages. I had another blog and that was locked and restricted to a circle of close friends. Writing has always been a refuge, personal. But I’ve also been lucky to come across certain people in my life who have encouraged me, almost at miraculously perfect timings. There was my language teacher in grade two who first read aloud an essay I wrote after a school trip to the botanical garden. I never thought of myself as a writer before then. Then there was a PhD student whose name was Grace that took a special interest in me in grade six, encouraging me in a quiet and continuous manner, and secretly I idolized her. Then there’s my high school English teacher who had a fervent love for Dawson’s Creek and my homework. He made me believe that my words are worth pursuing. Then there’s Roger Ebert, who for all purposes has no reason to take notice of my writing, and he did. And he not only took notice, but took interest. A Pulitzer winner, survivor of cancer, with more than his share of things to do, so encouraging of a virtual stranger. Why? I shall never presume to know. But I am truly thankful. For I am at a point in my life that I really needed this. And I’m glad that it came to me.

So yes, I do feel you reading the words I write, comment or not. It’s not about that. To me it’s always been about the people. The human connection. I’ve always been sort of in love with people, as individuals. They are the most fascinating creations in the world. No two are the same. A world of infinite possibilities within each. I think, no matter what I end up doing for the rest of my life, I will never stop being fascinated of people, and I will never stop being in awe of them, and in love with the world within them and created by them.

11 Comments leave one →
  1. September 29, 2009 9:44 PM

    Writing is a release, and I’ve always found it best when it’s personal. When what’s written is what you need to write, no matter what the commenters think.

    But then again, there is that thing with community…

    Roger is awesome!

  2. Patrick Lloyd permalink
    September 30, 2009 12:58 AM

    Grace, I really love reading your blog.

  3. September 30, 2009 8:21 AM

    I second Randy and Patrick. I’ve also been the beneficiary not just of encouragement, but of encouragement at the right time. Isn’t it funny how it often happens to occur either when you’ve just tried something new, or when you’re ready to quit? If my first poems had not met with encouragement from my tenth grade English teacher, if I hadn’t received emails from my friends amazed that I was trying to write a novel–at points when I was ready to move onto something else out of sheer frustration–if my mom hadn’t, one day while I was still in elementary school, complemented me as a storyteller, would I still be writing today? Perhaps, but I’d be less willing to share it with others.

    Also, like you, I have received encouragement from Roger Ebert (in response to my comment about his blog about blogs–I comment under my real name, Greg Salvatore), though he gave pride of place to you in his blog entry for the same reason I am a subscriber to your blog today: you are an excellent writer. :-)

  4. Andrew permalink
    September 30, 2009 12:24 PM

    Writing is a great way to achieve self-actualization. When I write, I find different things about myself than I can sometimes enjoy and sometimes despair over. Usually I am despairing over my inability to write as good as others.

    I find it can be very therapeutic as well. But reading good writing is just as therapeutic. Good writing, like good coffee can perk you up, warm you up and make your mind move a million miles an hour (or millions of KM/hr for my Canadian counterparts). Bad writing, like bad coffee leaves a bitter taste in your mouth and occasionally grounds.
    Thanks for being a good cup of coffee, Grace.

  5. hm15 permalink
    September 30, 2009 4:11 PM

    Its really brave to publish a blog, and let people who you KNOW access it. I’m less scared of strangers reading my stuff (because really they don’t know who I am) than my friends and family. Mostly because most of my stuff is inspired by the people in my life, and therefore ABOUT them.

    Its scary letting people in, to that private section of your mind, and wondering if their perception of you will change after they read your over sentimental, and melo dramatic musings on some little movie/book/ spat….

    So good on you for publishing your stuff; me likey your blogs and photos.


    • Grace permalink*
      September 30, 2009 4:22 PM

      You’re right. For the longest time that’s why this didn’t exist. It was a surprisingly easy decision though, the timing just felt right, I guess.

      Also, this is a great filter. You can tell a lot about who really know you by the way they react to your writings.

      I would love to read you. I know there are some stuff going on in that head of yours :)

      oh right, of course I don’t know who you are… ;)

      • hm15 permalink
        October 1, 2009 12:54 PM

        hahah — ofcourse you DONT….

        My stuff’s pretty sentimental and elementary, you might puke after the second sentence.


  6. September 30, 2009 8:21 PM

    Keep on writing fellow scribe! :D

  7. David permalink
    October 1, 2009 10:04 PM

    Please, keep writing.

    Because I will continue to read.

  8. October 2, 2009 11:30 AM

    Pity you had to stop. Would have loved it if you had gone on.

  9. Rick Boys permalink
    October 4, 2009 5:02 AM

    Grace — I followed Roger Ebert’s lead to your blog. He is right, as always, about your excellent writing. For me, your writing is true from your heart. Try not to look in the outer mirror too much, nor out to the admiring masses. Stay with your inner guide and you will touch people in ways you cannot anticipate. That is the only way to maintain that “zone” or flow. Best of luck to you, and I will keep up via RSS.

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