Viola Davis, the artist and powerhouse, said in an interview that every artist comes to a point where they lose the love for their art. What I want to remind you of, dear writer, is this may happen to you. And when it does–be prepared. You must prepare to fall in love with it again.
I keep going back to the prophetic tone of Dylan Thomas. You have to rage against the dying of the light. You must in order to get back to your first love.
The drive to get back to it must have a force behind it which is formidable and incessant. For me, one of the things that rescued me was the love of words. The seducing rhythm of the peck of keys. The scratch of pen to paper. What are you willing to do to rediscover the love of words?
For me, I had to become honest with what I was. What I had lost. The scarier thing was confronting why I had lost it. If you cannot pinpoint the why, you can get to the for.
Writers, by virtue of their careers, are obsessed with words and languages. We record what is said, and maybe unsaid. We decode and recode in order to transmit truths or dreams. It is for the love of words that allows Tolkien to be timeless. Hemingway and Fitzgerald to be classic. And Angelou, Hughes, Morrison and Walker to be part of societal shaping: classic works in their own right. It is because of the existence of these works, am I able to create. To record. And to tell stories with the most passionate of fervor.
It is the love of words that compels. That calls. That draws. It is for that love, that I keep at it. I want to know more about it. I study and stretch my own imagination. It strengthens my craft. The love of words deepens. Have I mastered everything? No, that’s why I, like Stephen King, call writing a craft.
You work what you have with what you have to do greater with what you will have. Rekindle your love affair, beloveds. I promise your love will be there, arms wide, to make you strong again.