Do you ever feel your writing is telling you something, or even foretelling something?
This is the first time in many years that I’ve dived into writing. More than fifteen years ago I took some extended time off work and wrote, wrote, wrote, producing the drafts of a number of novels and a lot of poetry. Back then, the internet was only just in its birth stages and blogging was non-existent. The only way to be published was to run the gauntlet of publishing firms, a daunting prospect at the best of times. I loved to write, but wasn’t sufficiently ambitious to run that particular road.
Then I went back to work, forgot for the moment about writing, and creatively returned to sleep. Which isn’t really the point of this post – it’s just a background introduction.
I’m on holidays at the moment (will soon be back at work) but during this time something prompted me to dust off the old manuscripts and re-consider them in this age of publishing on line. It’s amazing how much life has changed during this time – before I can even think about such ambitions I have to update them. And from beginning that piece of work I was inspired to create this blog, and to make a commitment to not let the writing die when I return to work next week.
But the interesting thing I found was that the themes of the novels and prose, though entirely fictional, often reflected experiences, emotions and lessons that my life would lead me to over the following years. Nothing exactly the same, of course – my fictional, literary characters did not spring fully formed out of the pages into my real life, but the types of people and types of issues did. It read like some odd prescience, and that made me wonder.
Was it prescience? Was the writing prophetic? And if so, what does this say about the nature of reality? The nature of choice? Was I fated to go through certain types of experiences or emotions which my muse foresaw in some strange way? If so, given the infinite number and interdependency of small decisions and choices that lead to the larger sweep of one’s life experience, is any choice really a choice?
Or was it some other odd form of creation – where, by writing of certain thoughts and feelings, writers can draw them to themselves in some strange, energetic, mystical way? If so, do we need to be careful where the muse takes us, and is this even possible? I know if I want to write on a theme but don’t have an ‘idea’ it doesn’t happen; alternatively once I have an ‘idea’ the theme is almost irrelevant to the words flowing.
Or further still, is it some form of unconscious self-fulfilling prophecy – that in writing in the abstract I then unknowingly went out to seek something like the experiences of which I wrote? Completely unaware I was doing it. Writing a real narrative for my life in some unknowing sense even where I thought I was completely dealing with fiction. Did the writing express, then, something I felt I lacked and wanted, and then did it compel me to go out and find it? And if so, can you ever be guaranteed to find what you are seeking?
I’d love to hear from other writers – or creative people from all areas – about whether they have experienced something like this? There are other interesting synchronicities that seem to arise with writing – such as where a theme seems to take off across the globe without any conscious collaboration – as described in the theory of morphic resonance. All in all I find the creative process an exceedingly mysterious one on many levels.
How about you?
Do you ever look back at what you’ve created and feel, in some strange way, it has also created you?