We didn’t start the fire
It was always burning
since the world’s been turning.
We didn’t start the fire
But when we are gone
It will still burn on, and on, and on, and on…
Do you ever feel like that? I have caught myself saying it over and over, on here and other places. I mean it.
When I have a story in my head, it burns. It is a raging inferno trying to escape but invades every aspect of my life. The plot fills my mind like thick smoke, choking out everything else. The characters come to life, growing and flaunting their light to me like flames. The details rain down like embers, stinging and hot, brief flashes of sudden and intense OH!
I burn, therefore I write.
Some stories may kindle from a single thought, a fragment of a dream, a whisper of an emotion. Inside the arid and dry scraps which are everyday mundane life, they simmer, gathering strength. Their wickedness lies in the slow festering of heat, the kernal of a plot that tantalizes just beyond my full cognizance. I almost smell it, almost feel it, taste the flicker of a change. It is there, but hidden, buried in the walls of my soul, lurking in deceptive innocence, smoldering in a void. Without warning, a trigger sparks it to life and a volcanic explosion occurs with a whooosh of immense and oxygen sucking power.
It ignites. I am consumed. I am breathless in the voracious appetite. They feed and grow, details flourish and character taking life, dancing with the winds of personalities and angst. A force of churning inspiration sweeps across me, baking ideas into my spirit. Control belongs to the ever changing, ever increasing glow of sizzling creativity. Before it, I am nothing, a vessel which it uses to spread.
There are victims. Influences of such magnitude leave charred scraps in their wake, the often neglected areas of my life which must wait. (I swear, one day I will have every pair of socks in the house mated and in the proper drawers.)
The fiery birth of a full blown tale that leaps from nothingness into full blazing glory and refuses to be denied is awe-inspiring, often frightening and always miraclous. It is a rare phenomena but such a thing of beauty, I can not look away. I am capitvated, incinerated and left gasping for air. I burn with need, possessed by the scorching urge to vent it to the world. The tale licks at my life until I blister with it’s touch.
It will not be extinguished. It must run its’ course, burn and burn until it turns on itself and hisses with a flared sigh before coughing the last pale wisp of exhaustion. Heavy and clinging, the scent permeates the air through edits and revisions, reminding me of the tale it told, the gift of epic imagination bestowed to me. Only the cleansing breeze of completion can erase the magic of a rise from nothing to those final precious keystrokes.
Writing is passion. You either burn with it or are burnt by it. Embrace the blaze and feel it’s domination.
BTW, Cool link about all the hard to catch lyrics from Billy Joel’s We Didn’t Start the Fire http://www.teacheroz.com/fire.htm