If you’re a writer, your ideas come in different ways, at various times.
I thought it might be interesting to chart or track where and how at least one of these ideas came from, how it unfolds.
This is something I have not yet written, so it’s a mystery to me how it might unfold. I’m in the dark.
You see, having an idea of something to write about is not the same as actually writing about it …
And it is only in the writing that I often find the heart of what I am writing.
A few weeks ago, my mom shared a link in our family chat group, or maybe it was a personal text to me, about a bridge we all knew. A bridge that had fallen.
Not a world-famous bridge, but a family famous one. It collapsed beneath record snowfall.
I saw a few images of the bridge fallen beneath the snow. I showed my husband and boys.
And that was it.
But then, today, I was looking over some old photos and saw it. The bridge, standing as a background to a camping adventure.
And then I looked some more and found it again, on a summer trip my husband and I had taken to California when we had been living in India. Our daughter, not yet two years old. And me, pregnant with the son that is graduating in a couple of weeks.
I looked up the bridge online and found a couple of interesting facts about it.
I opened a new Word Doc and saved the article and the url.
Then I copied the images into a folder with the photos.
And that’s it. That’s as far as I’ve gotten. Right now, I’m not quite in the mood for writing, for reflecting and exploring. That’ll come at some point in time, hopefully in the near future.
And that is how an essay sometimes begins.
To write a creative essay is to assay. To assay is to undertake, to attempt.
“The art of writing,” as one author puts it, “is the art of discovering what you believe.”
And so, the writing must be undertaken to discover the heart of a story.
For now, here are a few photos of the bridge, when it still stood.
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