Often when I tell people stories from my childhood or my life, in general. People often tell me that I should write a book. I don’t think this is unusual to say, I often find people like this. I have a sneaking suspicion, that many of us have lived similar lives in many ways, I just think some of us are more observant than others. We process something much different than others.
Take this morning, as I walked my dog, I saw a man in a black suit, with a skinny black tie, sitting in a blue Mini Cooper Turbo. Many people would hardly notice him, but in my writer’s mind, he was a hitman, getting ready to make a hit, which would rock the neighborhood. He also was possibly a CIA agent who is gathering information about a possible spy from another country in our neighborhood.
People might call it paranoia, I don’t think so. I did not call the cops, or confront the person. I just thought it, not in a sense of being worried about it, but about the possibility. This is what it is like to live in the mind of a writer, whether you have never written anything or not, this is how writers think. We live in the space that is exists between possibility and impossibility. It is an uncomfortable place for many, but for some of us, it is how we make peace with our busy minds that are constantly processing our surroundings.
I sit in a coffee shop, where without thinking about it, I have thought about what each person is doing here and a possibility of a story of them. One is a retired dancer, who has never been able to get back to feeling she had on stage. A couple of women sit nearby weaving threads together, which is therapeutic to them, as they used to be on a bomb diffusing team in Iraq. Another older man, sitting and eating is wondering how many more days and years have to pass as he mourns the recent loss of his wife Irene. Another man sits with all of his business paperwork, with his back to the wall, as if he is working on the next Enron scandal.
See this is what is like to sit in the mind of a writer, a scary place. A place where a million beginnings lie. A place where a million possibilities take place. Then we take off our headphones close our laptop, wipe the smile or tears from our face and try to enter back into the reality of world for good or bad.
The next time you see someone writing nearby you, just remember that they are creating and exiting worlds as you are nearby in the present. We exist in a different place, we live in our imaginations and it is sometimes hard to have our head in reality. Forgive us, for we are just trying to make sense of the gift and the curse of being a writer.