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  • Writer's pictureLaura Holian

Burnt Toast

Updated: Nov 9, 2019

Today is a burn toast kind of day. In my case it was a burnt bagel, followed by an agent rejection letter. And it’s overcast and drizzling outside, with a bit of a nippy wind. It’s barely eight thirty in the morning and I already just want to go back under my covers and try again tomorrow. I made morning plans with a good neighbor friend of mine. We sometimes go out for a nice breakfast as soon as the kids are off to school at eight. I’m hungry and on this particular morning she’s not free for breakfast until nine thirty. I still have an hour left of my hungry, grumbly belly before we get together. Sure I could eat something in the meantime. In fact, I already did. But it wasn’t enough to fill my belly nor my sour mood.

And now I am in that limbo area. Do I eat more and risk not being hungry for the meal I have to pay for at the restaurant? It’s like my morning is now mirroring my writing dilemma. In this moment in time, it’s not fun anymore. This pursuit to be published. I found out I have to be a whole lot of other things that I’m not. Do I keep pushing forward, investing time and money to do something that might not be enjoyable anymore? Don’t get me wrong. I like writing, in fact, I’m doing it right now. But now there are rules and roles you have to fit in. And I am not sure I like the itchy robes I may be reduced to wear.

It’s like when I was painting. A part of me didn’t want to take a class to learn how to paint because then I would always feel compelled to follow the new rules of painting. My creativity and personal style would be forever lost. Sure I would be producing magnificent paintings, but they would only ever be partly mine. The other larger segment would be the pre-molded requisite part that I had forced my creativity to fit into. It’s like you lose some of yourself in the process and I am not sure I am ready to do that.

I’ve learned that to publish a book you have to include certain elements. It’s like a recipe. And if you follow the recipe, the reward is you get published. But what if you just want to wing it? Can I follow a recipe? Yes. Actually, no. Most of the time I accidentally miss something or do things in the wrong order. The point is, could I follow the book recipe enough to fit within their conforms? Yes. But do I want to? Not really. Because then I am nothing more than a cookie cutter. I learned how to make the right shape and now I just stamp, stamp, stamp my way through it.

What I like about writing is baring my soul. I think it’s real and it’s relatable to others. Like right now. I’m in a shitty kind of mood. And maybe your morning is not going so great either. And now we can be gloomy, doomy, rainy kind of day brethren. And that’s why I want to write. Because knowing you might be out there sharing in my misery or in my joys makes me feel like we connect. And isn’t that all we are really trying to do?

#writing #reallife #introspection


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