Lourdes Mint's Mid-Life Miracle

Real-time memoir of the coming year (5/20/14 – 15) and the achievement of a life-long dream

About

Melancholia-2011_crop

Justine in Lars von Trier’s “Melancholia,” 2011

One Year, One Goal…

I will keep this blog for one year, May 20, 2014 to May 20, 2015. My goal, at the end of that year, is (1) to have FINISHED at least one of my many existing, but incomplete, fiction writings (or possibly something new); and (2) to be actively engaged in some concrete step in the process of publishing the completed piece(s).

At 47, I have been freelance editing/writing for the last year (Plan B, v2), after more than 12 years of working in a similar capacity for a major medical university (Plan B, v1). I enjoy the work sometimes and do it well enough, but it’s felt for a long time like it’s time to put a fork in it (not that I can, yet, but I do have just the fork and am careful never to be too far from it).

My dream has always been to be a successful (fiction) writer, to connect and share my imagination with others through story. Part of my reason for switching from my office job to freelancing, in fact, was to have more time to pursue my own writing. But I’ve made little progress. It’s not that I don’t write because I do, often: it’s just that I haven’t finished anything —– any of my fiction writings — in at least 20 years.

Ever since seeing Lars von Trier’s “Melancholia” (guaranteed to give most viewers a doom-and-gloom hangover that lasts for days if not weeks), I can compare my feelings about writing, about myself as a writer, with a particular image from the film (above). Actually, I don’t understand the scene in the context of the movie, even after reading about it. The character didn’t seem (to me) to be striving toward anything, and yet this picture seems to suggest something akin to the opposite — and that she feels restrained, held-back, tangled up in something and unable to move forward. But for me, it works perfectly, only forget the bridal gown and imagine those also-tangled-up-looking woods teeming with my half-rendered characters, wanting to be freed, their stories told.

So, what’s got me all tangled up? I’m not 100% sure, but most indications point toward a whole host of fears/doubts about my ability (20 years can do that to a person), plenty of distinctly “nonconstructive” habits (great distractions, also fertile ground for excuses), and maybe more than a touch of ADHD — a diagnosis I’ve resisted for years and wasn’t sure I’d even mention because I don’t intend to write much about it here. In fact, I seriously hope “the problem,” whatever it is exactly, does NOT become the focus of the blog.

The fact is, I don’t know what exactly I’ll be writing about here, though I’m sure I won’t be simply documenting the project, the whole year, day by day. I couldn’t/wouldn’t do that. I have never seriously journaled or kept a proper diary (feel an aversion to it, in fact), nor have I been a faithful keeper of logs/records or note taker. I also don’t enjoy writing letters about things that are actually going on. So I’ve just decided to just let this blog be whatever it needs to be, write whatever I feel the need to write about, to move me forward in making my mid-life miracle happen. It may (or may not) make good reading for others, but my hope is that it will lead to just that. 

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12 thoughts on “About

  1. I especially like the approach to blogging expressed in the final paragraph:)

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  2. What an unusually interesting “About” page. I followed you back here after you followed my blog.

    I do medical writing for a living with no medical training whatsoever and have for over a decade. So while I don’t feel I’m writing fiction, I am certainly being creative! My truly creative pieces remain etched in my mind — but trust me, they are brilliant.

    Beware the blog trap if you want to do serious writing. Blogging is great fun, you meet interesting, fun, knowledgeable people you wouldn’t normally meet. And it gets into your blood!

    Enjoy!

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    • Thank you, Elyse. And I fully agree that creativity, in writing or whatever medium, can take on many forms. I have a friend who lives very creatively, but is a medical illustrator. She also paints (mostly watercolor landscapes of places she’s traveled), but her choices, her mannerisms, her conversations, her whole being as it is revealed to others — these are the things that seem to me most creative about her.

      Oh, and thanks so much for the warning. I feel like you’ve read my mind. I was sort of blindsided by the allure of the blogging world … for me, anyway. And I am very wary, and now a bit ambivalent too — not sure I can say what I’m doing here and how it can possibly help me with my goal (I wrote about it somewhere around here). On the other hand, I feel like this is somehow forcing me to confront certain “issues” — aspects of self and what I’ve allowed myself for better or worse to think of as a “calling” — that are probably helpful for me to reckon with.

      I followed my nose to WordPress and am continuing in that way, trying not to over-think the big why of it.

      Writing is so solitary, which is hard for me sometimes. And I get so hyperfocused, my entire life falls into the writing hole when I let myself go. Good writing also takes me a lot of time (regular, very early morning sessions work best for me), which is hard to come by now. And then there’s the courage bit — I get almost afraid of my writing sometimes, what I’m writing about, I mean (not that it’s scary in the classical sense, but it freaks me out somehow … the question of where on earth the stuff is coming from?).

      So anyway, back to your warning, I have a new rule: work on my fiction first, and if there’s still a bit of time to play, blog.

      Thanks again. I look forward to reading more of you!!!

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  3. You went and done it. You went and followed Uncle Bardie’s Stories & Such. You are now one of Uncle Bardie’s Band of Merry Followers. Just so you know, Uncle Bardie’s a hoot, and he’s got quite a few whoppers in his bag of stories. Some funny, some not so funny. But all told for your entertainment. Thank you for following his blog.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Loved your style and was moved by what you had to say.

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  5. Khaya Ronkainen on said:

    Just when I discover your fascinating blog, I see that you planned to keep it only for a year. Hope I still get to catch up and learn if you managed to achieve your set goals:-).

    Like

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