Containing the Wildness

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The above pic shows the Wisteria that is slowly taking over a small deck I built near a wooded area of our side yard. Now, I constructed the small deck in order to set up a bird feeding station, which I’ve yet to do, sigh. Over the past month and a half, the wisteria has gone insanely wild.

Just a few days ago, as I walked down our drive with Cody, our black Lab, I stopped and gawked at the tangle of vines. The thought occurred to me, or the metaphor occurred to me, that’s creative…I’m witnessing a living metaphor for the natural creative process.

How does the metaphor work? Well, I think that one who professes to be a fiction writer, must on occasion, give in to the “wildness.” Now, what does that entail. I suppose one could run out in a field with a bottle of whiskey, get drunk and naked and howl at the rising moon. Okay. Yeah. But then, what about the writing?

No, I’m speaking of “wildness” within the narrative itself. For instance, one evening, my wife and I were walking Cody. (I walk him in the morning. We both walk him in the evening.) As we hiked up the road, we lapsed into a comfortable silence. My wife told me later–that I started shaking my head. I looked angry. I clenched my fist!

I explained, convincingly I hope, that I was imagining a scene–a scene I had yet to write. I was composing, dramatically. It was a violent argument between two people. Now you must realize, I’m about the most non-confrontational person you will ever meet. I’m the one who withers my opponent with a devastating comeback…two days late. sigh.

But in writing, I can–in the guise of my characters–just go wild. I can throw things, howl at the moon, get stoned, drive fast, grab a gun and run out of the house! Of course while writing or walking or sitting or driving or whatever! I limit myself to expressive and strange movements. Not Walter Mitty–the imagined world is not a world I’m a part of, but the character I’ve created–his/her world.

But, and here’s the kicker, at some point the wisteria, has to be cut back, edited, if you will. But oh, what fun was that wildness.

How about it fellow writers, do you ever just go buck-wild with your writing…maybe delete it all later–when nobody’s around?

One thought on “Containing the Wildness

  1. candyyork

    This was so funny to me because the whole weird expressions thing happens to me and my husband will say what’s wrong, and I’m like what? And it’s all because I disappeared inside my head, plotting something! Love the wisteria by the way, I say let it run free just like our imaginations!

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