Hurricanes. Fires. Earth Quakes. Feuds. Anger. Rage. Fear. Terror. Bombs. Humans acting like … well, I can’t say animals, because animals don’t rationalize and choose the way we do. Chaos! Humans are behaving badly. We lean hard on the news. Even in social media, we’re focusing intensely on the tragedy, death, dismay and all things horror.
Total and utter Chaos! Nobody’s making any sense any more.
The world is shifting.
Maybe, Henny Penny was right? Is the sky in fact falling?
Write it all down. All of it. Write it into your fiction. Write it into your non-fiction. Take notes. Pay attention. Notice everything.
I don’t say any of this out of disrespect for the victims of said chaos and trauma, but out of the realization that all of human kind for as long as we have had communication have been the people who have been the shepherds of our historical events. In 200 and maybe in 2000 years, it could be your writing that is studied.
Mind blown! Right!?
A human being wrote those cave symbols on cave walls. Charles Dickens taught us about our humanity when in dire times. The “A” team wrote the Bible. Humans, regardless of inspiration or message, have been recording history since the sticks and stones era.
Don’t leave out the good stuff. Don’t ONLY write about the bad stuff. Don’t ONLY focus on it either.
Find your balance. A keeper of details needs that to stay whole.
Make sure that you notice the small stuff too. Make sure that random acts of kindness, no matter how small get into those pages. Make sure you include sacrifices, and loving gestures of hope.
Even in the best horror there are also miraculous acts that remind us that we are all human. We have the dichotomy of choice that creates the authentic image of who we are.
When I write (fiction and non), I always try to find the good in the bad and the bad in the good. When we give our storytelling depth and dimension beyond the obvious, it’s better writing.
When we pay attention to motive, motivation, the deep end of our own emotions, we give ourselves permission to feel everything.
When we stay in a surface level shallow pool- panic because we’re all acting like the sky is falling; all we can do is make irrational, impulsive, insincere decisions.
In writing, to eliminate an entire set of feelings because they scare us, or make us feel bad, we’re only ever going to write from one perspective.
Dive deeply into the truth of the catastrophe. Notice where the light shines in on the darkest of days. Notice the darkness in all that blinding optimism.
Oh, about that blinding optimism, with all the shiny, happy people posting impossible beautiful lies about how deliriously happy and perfect they are all the time all over their social media … know this. That is the surface. What happens when a person treads water for too long? Yep. That’s right. They drown.
Learn how to swim. Learn how to delve deeply into the beautiful mess that is life.
Most important? Learn how to live comfortably in all of your emotions. Including the darkness. Including the fear, the rage, the sorrow, the terrifying.
Then, write for you. Write for yourself first. Stay in that moment of indulgence of your story (fiction and non) before releasing your Kraken onto the world.
Not all monsters are as terrifying as they seem in your mind.
That includes your epic novel. That includes that thing YOU, the writer are most terrified of. That includes the world.
So far and right now … the sky is not falling … everywhere. It’s certainly causing chaos for some people. There are ways to feel better about the natural disasters. Become a documentary worthy note taker. You can help by spreading the word, bring notice to their plight.
You are the story tellers. You are the bards. This is a writer on writing piece of advice that will help you to normalize all of the crazy. Keep it real.
Disasters? Horrible! Sad! Terrible!
They also offer us the opportunity to find the hope, the love, the extension of honor, the miraculous, the sane in an otherwise insane series of humans questioning our reality.
Write it all down and keep records of all of it. The human story. The animal kingdom. All of it.
At the end of the day, it’s entirely up to each individual to recognize their own story, and story is all it is. We create stories in our minds in order to cope with whatever it is that life threw at us.
We can change our story at any given moment. We can edit our own endings.
When you see a natural disaster that directly affects 7,000 people, know that there are now 7,000 versions of the story. They all have the disaster in common, but each is unique to the person who experienced this.
You don’t need a “writing prompt” or “inspiration” from someone else’s life. You are your own writing prompt and inspiration. You just have to be brave enough to get into your own head and feel all the feels.
That’s what a writer does. They live out the lives of 7,000 people all at one time. It’s a hell of a day job, but we all know, we wouldn’t want it any other way.
Peace & love of writing!
p.s… the memes are on Google Images & MY day job for the moment is as a holistic life coach. I work with “feelin’ the feels” when I’m not writing about feeling all the feels. Or, feeling them. 🙂 I am an emotional creature. I weep. I celebrate. I have experienced sorrow and pain. I have experienced miracles. Me? I live for the miracles. I help others on the path of the pain. That is how humans survive.
You can find me on the web @
Facebook @ KarenDalyAuthor
Twitter @ KarenEMHenry
My Website: http://www.henryhealing.com
& I write a weekly blog for the international pages of The Positive Psychology People. “Clarity” series and “Noetic Nomad” series.