Truth is I’m boring. An ordinary twenty-nine year-old woman hiding behind fantastical stories and characters I can only dream of knowing. I grew up in an ordinary hometown. Was raised by two ordinary, if not amazing, parents. Had an ordinary, if not happy, childhood.
I’ve not traveled very far, no further than my own country for sure. My most exciting vacations have occurred in Florida: Orlando and St. Augustine, Pensacola and Cape San Blas. I’ve been to Texas, California, Illinois…and no further.
Truth is I’m a bit of a homebody.
My simple pleasures in life are eating a good meal, cuddling on the couch with my husband, tending a small vegetable garden. Nothing too exciting, pretty ordinary and boring I guess.
I wonder sometimes how it could all fit together. An ordinary woman from an ordinary town writing, or at least trying to write, extraordinary non-fiction and fiction. I don’t have a vast well of exciting experiences to draw from. I’ve not been in many relationships. I’ve not even had that many friendships. I’m pretty much a loner with loner tendencies attempting to weave together words in an appealing and interesting way.
All of my heroes had fascinating and exciting lives. They were expatriates and war heroes, serial womanizers and alcoholics. They traveled extensively and walked on the fringes of society. They were the Hemingways and Faulkners, the O’Connors and Poes.
They were tortured and unstable. Artists driven by pain and passion.
I’m cheerful. Happy-go-lucky.
Lower middle class.
Ordinary and boring.
The closest I come to tortured and unstable is with social anxieties and neuroses. And yet, I write…just like they did. I’m driven to…just like they were.
Not all writers write from dark places. I understand that. Not all writers lead romantic, sensational lives. I understand that as well. But these heroes of mine did, these extraordinary talents who inspire me and whom I aspire to be like were never ordinary or boring…at least by this fan’s approximation.
So how does ordinary, boring me expect to follow in their footsteps? Where can I find inspiration and passion that’s equal to theirs?
The answer is…everywhere.
In the twisting limbs of the ancient oak tree that grows just down the street, watching generations come and go and change with the wind.
In the smiling, toothless grin of the construction worker who’s working hard to bring air back into my office building.
In the laughs and shared secrets between me and my husband, whispered late at night to the summer song of crickets and hoot owls.
In the ordinary, boring days that drag on too long and yet never last long enough.
In the ordinary, boring life of a woman chasing her dream and catching handfuls of wishes-come-true along the way.
I don’t have to travel the world (like Hemingway). I don’t have to drink through pain and sorrow (like Faulkner). I don’t even have to marry my cousin (like Poe). I just have to live life and perhaps look a little closer for my inspiration…because what may first appear to be ordinary and boring may actually be pretty extraordinary after all.
Where do you find inspiration? In grand adventures or everyday blessings?
Speaking of extraordinary, have you visited yeah write yet?