Thank you! My Black Cat Blue Sea Award

This must be a million-dollar question: why do people blog? Why put yourself out there, share your words, your photos, poems, thoughts, musings and snapshots of your life? Are you seeking connection, promotion or an audience? Are you motivated to inspire others with your blog, boost creativity in a global community or perhaps you simply want to create an online space that is purely yours.

Hand on heart, I kick-started this blog for all of the above reasons. As I inch forward with it, however, I learn there are additional gifts and this morning awoke to discover a lovely gift indeed: a nomination from Living vs Existing for The Black Cat Blue Sea Award along with a message about how much she enjoys my writing. A huge thank you, Cherylene!

Living vs Existing aims to ‘Enlighten, Motivate and Inspire Change’ via blogposts. Cherylene’s first short story is a sweet tale of two contrasting families, a story with a moral theme at its heart: ‘It does not matter  where you start in this race called life; all that matters is how you finish.’ Predominantly, Cherylene gives readers a glimpse into her life, from sharing her poetry to insight about mind, body and spiritual well-being. The joy she has in her life from her two boys and in her writing shines through!

Cherylene’s response to her own Black Cat Blue Sea Award questions are here. These are my answers to Cherylene’s prompts:

  1. If you could go to any period in time within your life, would you go to your past, your future or would you remain in the present and why? The future strikes me as quite a scary prospect at the moment, what with quite mad political friction heating up, so it’s a toss-up between past and present. I’d like to visit the 1950’s/60’s to experience the upswell of writers and artists I admire in print and film, but also to experience the enormous change in politics and music over those two decades. But that would just be a visit. I could not live without my MacBook and iPhone so, for technological and creative reasons, my feet are remaining planted in present day.
  2. What is your all-time favourite movie or television series? Too difficult. Father Ted and Catastrophe are the sharpest of comedies on television so are favourites. Favourite films range from Some Like it Hot to The Player, O Brother Where Art Thou to Pulp Fiction.
  3. When no one is watching or listening, would you consider yourself more of a singer or a dancer? I’ve been both a singer and dancer but these days, I belt the blues more than pirouette. A singer. Definitely.

I nominate the following bloggers, knowing that all may not respond but hopefully they shall be heartened just by receiving this accolade from a fellow blogger.

  1. Shivamt25
  2. LOVEUROWNLIFE
  3. Aroused
  4. Mum’s the Word Blog
  5. Out of My Write Mind
  6. BEXoxoBlog

Questions for these six bloggers:

  1. Why do you rev up the computer and blog?
  2. If Hollywood were casting an actor to play you in a film, which actor of present/past cinema do you see in that role?
  3. You’ve been contracted to write a novel—what would the story be about?

Thanks again to Cherylene—it’s been a reflective and enjoyable exercise to post this, to connect with other bloggers. Gratitude to all who have read this and to the nominees who participate.

Estella

On the Cusp of My Circus

Yesterday, I craved to write. A drought of days where I had not written a word had kept me awake at night for four days. Frustratingly, when a surge of words rumbled to my consciousness, I was either too busy prioritising other people’s needs or, on rare occasion, either floating in the bath or driving–both settings not conducive for tapping on a keyboard. Then last night, this stunning Chagall painting (The Blue Circus) popped up in my photos, along with a quote from the painter:

My hands were too soft…I had to find some special occupation, some kind of work that would not force me to turn away from the sky and the stars, that would allow me to discover the meaning of life.

At risk of hurtling over the wall into sentimentality, Chagall’s words broke through the writing barrier that had contained my creativity since last Friday. Understand this: far from bigging up my ego to the size of a buffalo, I confess that my writing is a slow-burn at the moment. My projects are diverse: two fiction manuscripts, a screenplay idea I am tweaking, a thickening compilation of short-stories ready to print and a pushed-to-capacity external hard-drive packed with ideas begging me to develop them to publication. Too many projects distracting me from mastering just one.

‘There is not enough time in the day!’ I shout at files in my laptop. My head often feels dizzy. It would be easier if I had not made the decision to write full-time; instead, be a casual writer, scribbling Haikus on beermats and banging out flash-fiction when a spare fifteen minutes cleared in my diary.

But I am on the cusp. I feel it. I felt it strongly last night when staring at Chagall’s upside-down woman painted brazenly red, the yellow moon aside her with violin, the green goat against vibrant blues in a chaotic masterpiece. Some days my life is a chaotic masterpiece. My writing is a chaotic masterpiece. It is a circus. Chagall said:

 For me a circus is a magic show that appears and disappears like a world.

So, today I begin to write again. Mundanely and monotonously, I was brushing my teeth this morning when a breakthrough idea about the protagonist in my novel burst in my head. I recognised that fluttering of excitement in belly, that urgency to transfer the idea from grey matter to grey MacBook before it evaporated. I strode with vengeance to computer. An hour later, I am here and my protagonist, Billie, has enjoyed a romp at The Metropolitan Museum of Art within the confines of a 3,000-word chapter. Apparently the answer for Billie was that I as starving her of art, so I delivered my main character to The Met where she, too, can stare at the beauty of Chagall.

With this new chapter added to my manuscript this morning, returning to my blog felt the next step. I sit here, ruminating over the supremely expressive Chagall, his paintings and his words again: ‘…some kind of work that would not force me to turn away from the sky and the stars, that would allow me to discover the meaning of life.’

I may not have discovered the meaning of life today but, damn it, I sit here on the cusp of creating a world of beauty for my life in words.

via Daily Prompt: Cusp