If you’re living a dream, is it supposed to storm? With no lightning, just thunder that goes on for so long you wonder if Thor’s record got stuck? And rain clouds you’ve been keeping an eye on sneak down off the Luberon Mountains when you’re not looking and cause a deluge.
And then bang! There’s the forked lightning with so many amps it lights up the day sky and then the thunder gets really nasty and shakes the wine glasses in your 18th century solid stone house.
Nothing can be done but to stay home and write. It’s raining on my desk on the terrace and the shadow of the olive tree is taking up all the space.
So I put on my loose pyjamas – I’m grateful for the reminder to get back into them, Sue – and light the fire.
That’s where you would have found me this morning. Writing longhand in my notebook in front of the fire about whatever comes up. Collecting the bed of detail I may or may not need for my novel. Following any thought that wanders by. I have the time here to write and dream. There’s no pressure to ‘produce’ anything. I work by writer James Baldwin’s quote,
One writes out of only one thing – one’s own experience. Everything depends on how relentlessly one forces from this experience the last drop, sweet or bitter, it can possibly give.
Today in the late morning something changed. For the first time I wanted to go to the computer and write a scene that has been hanging around in my pages, solidifying for a week. The urge was as strong as the need for a birthing mother to push.
So I went to the computer and wrote. Another scene demanded to be written so I wrote that, too. There’s a joy to writing this way I haven’t experienced for a long time. It comes from abandoning yourself to your writing, listening to and following your instinct.
If there’s one thing I will take away from this time in Menerbes, it’s this.
How will the dream fit in my real day-to-day life? Ah, there’s a challenge!