The other day something cool happened.
It was Wednesday. While reading the news, I had a thought that inspired me to open a blank document and start typing. This almost never happens so sporadically. At least not anymore. At least not like it used to. But there I was. Typing. Free writing. And after a few paragraphs I realized what I was writing was a great start to the grad school application I’d been mulling over for the last two weeks. Should I go to grad school, should I not go to grad school… I decided I would first have to get accepted before any real decision could be made.
I saved the document under a new folder: Berkeley App. I called it “Essay1.” It was kinda exciting.
The next thing that happened was very routine. I opened Facebook. Scrolling dumbly through the newsfeed, I saw an arbitrary link posted by an acquaintance from my Davis days. Someone I’d always wanted to be closer with, but somehow never really seized the chance. I was too consumed by the soft spoken wandering eyed boyfriend, I think, to have energy for anyone else.
Anywho, for whatever reason I clicked on the link. This kind of thing is not so routine. I’m not too keen on links. I don’t usually click on them unless they look extra juicy.
This link lead to a blog. And as I read the story on the blog, I began to cry. I cried before I even knew what the story was about. This happening isn’t as rare as the others. I’m a crier, just like my mom. These tears weren’t saggy sad ones, but happy rainy wet ones that softened my cracked and gridlocked writer’s soul.
There, before me on the screen, was style. Plain and simple good writing. It wasn’t fancy or academic or full of shit. It was an easy read with a lot of pith. Something about it brought me back to the days when I had just began studying writing. When my inspiration was clear and regular. When the words came easy. It had an ease and a realness that reminded me of the essays I had loved and mimicked.
I re-posted that link on my own Facebook, I loved it so much. You can see it here: Amy Ferris’ “Marrying George Clooney.”
I even messaged the author, Amy Ferris- a completely unprecedented act of reaching out.
Then, I spotted a badge on her blog that said “She Writes,” and I wound up discovering this whole online community of she-writers reaching out to each other and cheering each other on.
“Join” it said.
And I did. Another unprecedented act.
To my delight and surprise, Amy Ferris wrote back the next day. She thanked me. She thanked me.
All of this buzz and she-power was getting really fun. Here I was gaining access to a whole host of real awesome lady writers.
And then, as I was checking out the new She Writes web page, I saw an article about a newly published author named Judith Newton. The author just so happened to be from UC Davis, my UC Davis, my darling city and alma mater. My roots. The place of my great creative renaissance. Oh, and the wandering eyed boyfriend. Ugh.
Anywho, this was all very exciting and had me thinking about writing in the way that I used to write. That is, with style. Here were women, real women who knew people and places I knew, who had made the whole writing gig work. Who were out there still having those conversations that mattered. ‘I want to be in that conversation,’ I thought. I want to be on their side of the fence. And what was the most exciting of all was that I wanted this with complete certainty. Me! Wanting something with certainty.
So, that was a fun feeling.
And the good news just keeps coming. Somehow the weather has managed to clear up unexpectedly. We missed the typhoon that was headed our way. More cool new blogs by awesome writers keep popping up on my newsfeed from my new writer friends. Friends who want to talk about stylish, good writing. Friends who are filled with inspiration and information.
At this point in my life, when I can’t stop fretting about and thinking about and changing my mind about what I am going to do when this year abroad is over in just a few short months, I can’t help but take this as a sign. I don’t know completely what direction it’s pointing toward but it says “Write this way, mah lady.”
Excuse me. I just couldn’t help myself.
The other day something cool happened.