Friday, May 1, 2009

Turning Days

May 1.

It's interesting that a single day can hold significance for so many different groups, in diverse ways. It's Beltane, May Day, Lei Day (Hawa'ii), and National Love Day (Czech Republic).

I love the month of May, for some reason I tend to become very hopeful in May. The weather is perfect, not too hot, but no longer cold. Leaves begin to unravel and flowers bloom.

When I'm full of goodwill I find it easier to speak more honestly about life's challenges. A number of my favorite blogs have recently discussed the struggles that writers face in life. I'm particularly indebted to their posts.

As someone who struggles with severe, chronic depression it helps to speak with others who face similar challenges, and that this particular malady plagues those of the writing kind all too often.
It's vital to know that others understand your own pain, and that you needn't "suffer for art."

One of my favorite books on writing is Betsy's Lerner's The Forest for the Trees: An Editor's Advice to Writers. This text addresses not the nitty-gritty of technical aspects of writing, but instead the life and spirit of those who write. The chapter "Touching Fire" struck a nerve as Lerner speaks to the ways in which so many writers are lost to depression and substance abuse. Nathan Bransford recently raised the subject of sacrifice and self-abuse for writers, and I think the topic deserves reflection.

While it can be wonderful to lose oneself in writing, it's too easy to also lose one's self entirely. I'm fortunate to have a wonderful husband, family, and friends who help keep me anchored, but at times I still find myself staring into the abyss.

The blogging community of writers offers yet another space in which to ground ideas and experiences and make me feel less like I'm stranded on a desert island. Thank you to all beacons of hope out there. You know who you are.


  1. "Thank you to all beacons of hope out there. You know who you are." Please reread that line and look in the mirror. I think you're terrific : )!!!!

  2. OH, another thing : ) This is a link to a post from a blog I follow that I think you'll find interesting. It's about a celebration in The Netherlands. I knew nothing about it and really enjoyed the history lesson. Thought you'd appreciate it : ) : ) : )