Do you mind a few more photos of fog? These are shots I took at Willard Beach in South Portland. It's a lovely neighborhood beach in any weather, but I do love a good rolling fog for a walk.
I also wanted to say thank you for all the wonderful comments and emails about my last post. They made my week.
|I can't help it; in my head I've named this shot "The Happy Couple."|
I've been writing a great deal lately, and helping clients work on their writing projects, which is a process that brings rewards of its own. Often when people ask me for advice about how to become a writer, I am hard pressed to give them any one answer. Of course, reading heaps of books is up near the top of my list, and writing every day--or as close to every day as possible. But I think maybe the most essential trait a writer can cultivate is a love of solitude. Social butterflies are not suited to the task.
When you do seek companionship, it is helpful to find others who love solitude, too. Then you can be alone together. They need to be people who don't fret when you wander off for hours to stare at leaves and shells and rocks and twigs. They need to feel very secure in their own ability to be alone when you lock yourself away for hours to write. They need to not wait for you to come out of hiding. Instead, they must have their own quiet obsessions that occupy long stretches of time. In this way, when you do come back together, it will be out of a mutual joy in the work and play you are both pursuing. There will be much to share, much that sustains both.
And there will be no petty jealousy. Each will support the other in his or her pursuits. I'm not saying this is an easy path to choose, but it is certainly a more joyous and productive one when we can share it with like-minded spirits. This all seems like an obvious thing to say, but I know what it's like when a writer (or an artist of any kind) tries to share her life with someone who does not understand the need for solitude. This leads to a silent pen, which leads to loneliness, something utterly different from solitude. The latter nourishes, the former leeches one dry.
Are you someone, writer or not, who needs solitude? If so, how do you find it? I think it is increasingly rare in our relentlessly "connected" world. One trick I have is that I don't watch television . . . at all . . . ever. I'd love to hear some of your strategies for finding solitude.
Wishing you a week of beauty and lots of creative energy, my friends!