telling a story seems so simple, yet, to tell one well is not that simple.
I have tried to help two people write books. One had an excellent idea for a story in them that was relatable to helping young unwed mothers. The other was a man whom I joked could sell one hundred thousand units to the wives of men with the reality and hope that if 20-30 men read the book – he would change their lives forever.
the problem with the first book was that I could not come up with or invent the dialog that would be reminiscent of an old-time southern period piece.
With the second, I would spend 3 hours every few days with the man, and he would talk himself out of his image and the last 10-20 minutes was fundamental, elementary gold for a message. The problem with the message was that the man was like any normal man. If you have lived, you have done stuff in your life that is not something society would look favorably. It is hard to tell such a story if you have crafted an image for your life and hidden the real person in your heart.
In a sense that is what lent is about, or the idea of being true to yourself. It is the same battle I am fighting today during this odd, and painful Lenten experience. It is ironic, I have done the least this year and seem to be getting the most resistance to change as the message of selfless love battles with the world's view of selfish love. Interesting times.
I do have a book that I started a few years ago. The first paragraph is a keeper as I am a line that just came out that pretty much sets the tone for the rest of the book, but also, the reality of how many of us work out our journey on this earth.
Even the title, while a bit long, pretty much tells the tale of what the book will be about to anyone seeing the cover. I thought the book was going to complete a few years ago, yet, a lot more has happened with it. What I am learning as I different layer or level of pushing into oneself and trying to change occurs with the reality of yourself and instead of being like a box of chocolates where you have a myriad of costume changes based on what you are doing. You walk your life with one set of clothes, your actual true self.
If you live in an individualistic society like the united states, it is probably more difficult to get comfortable in your skin than say a collective community. It is perhaps why makeup, cosmetics, plastic surgery, and any vice is available to medicate that which is missing inside one's heart and soul. There is great beauty in having so many choices and options in one's life. What I don't’ agree in is that capitalism and consumerism are perfect for the long term health of the human mind, body, and soul when it comes to being real with yourself.
I don’t know when or where the last chapter of this book will be. I thought I had the final chapter three years ago, then last year, and today, I don’t know what the future will bring that will share the reality of the story. I guess it is one takes the time and walks out each day by faith.
We all have stories inside of us. Yesterday I think I was discussing how published writers we lamenting how many bad books were on the market and 51% of the market thinks their story is worth telling. I probably would agree with that in this age of instant gratification and a seeming blitz of attention span draining fluff and content that has me wonder, “is this the best we can do?”
Anyhow…I would rather live the story than tell it. Who knows if the story will ever be written or spoken? All I know is right now. The last chapter is not there yet.
Now I go and live for this day. I am not sure if I wrote the book if I would be vilified? Alternatively, would people in similar situations perhaps stop and think for a moment and realize the path they are on, probably isn’t the best they can do for themselves – no matter what messages the world says is a success with stuff. I have learned to let go of the “stuff” and the walls that separated the entire me fell and have allowed me just to be myself – wherever and whenever I am.
It is good. I hope to continue the remodel to make it better. Who knew minimalism could be so liberating and freeing?