So, earlier this week I went to Longwood Gardens with a dear friend of mine from college. As we walked through the plants and displays of flowers, a thought occurred to me about how similar all those growing things related to my journey in writing.
You see, in all the years I’ve put my thoughts on paper, I’ve had my days (weeks, months, etc) that were happy, productive, creative – and those days that were empty, stagnant, lifeless. On the days that were positive, words would flow out of my brain, unhindered, magical, as if the story was already written and just needed to come to life on the screen. On those other days, I would become critical, depressed, showing myself no mercy at the lack of ability to produce. These times would often overshadow all those good days put together and would eventually frustrate me to the point that I found it difficult to dig myself out of the hole again, to begin writing once more.
But, as I looked at those flowers, it occurred to me that growing things are much like the art of writing (or any art, really.) The idea starts small, like a seed, with just a glimmer of what the end result will one day become. Over time, that idea is cultured, tended to, as it grows in it’s storyline, as the characters are developed, the scene laid out for the reader. So, too will the rain and sun aid the flower or plant in it’s ultimate goal of coming to full bloom.
There will be road blocks – edits that just don’t go right, complete re-writes of scenes that just don’t fit, characters that are ultimately cut out of the manuscript. Droughts will wreak havoc on the plants, devastating storms that might rip the roots from their ground.
Yet, in the end, something has been born – a story, an encouragement, a world – even if it is only ever read by myself. Despite what mother nature may throw at all the greenery outside our window, inevitably, most growing things will survive, will flourish to decorate God’s beautiful planet and to remind us that we are not alone.
Seeing all those green things certainly did inspire me to keep going, despite the times of drought I may face. My hope is that when you look outside your window, you, too, will be inspired to keep on, keepin’ on. For, if we don’t, who will be there to encourage those that will come after us, those creative minds that will change the world of tomorrow?
Happy reading, friends.