Write On

A sacred space for writers of all genres.
"I want to stay as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all kinds of things you can't see from the center."
-Kurt Vonnegut

Camden, ME

I found a secret spot

with a sacred muse

and grass-filled lot.

Lighthouse overlook was the only

signal in—a raggedy wooden board

pointing west towards the sea.

Running about, planning to look

at waterfront housing,

this spot stopped me short.

I had to go in.

I followed the wood chipped path

found an opening to another world—

lighthouse, islands, lobster boats,

congregated and spread like cocktail

party guests.

Sitting there, dead center,

smooth and sturdy,

a secret spot sitting log

placed there just for me.

Wicked Whoopie

I’ve been noticing the recent Whoopie Pie craze seen in store shops, the windows of clothing stores, and even lining the registers at supermarkets.  An ad for a hotel stated, “Book a room with us and get a free whoopie pie!”  Just yesterday, I went into a store that sold whoopie pie earrings, necklaces, dog treats, and decorative buttons.  What’s the deal with Mainers making all this whoopie about whoopies?  Has the whoopie pie replaced the lobstah’ as its state mascot?  Was the creator of whoopie pies born in Camden, ME?  Does Stephen King, hailing from Bangor, ME just an hour north, use his authorship to demand that whoopie pies be sold around the state? 

The next step in finding out the answers is of course, Wikipedia.  The site told me that there was some whoopie pie controversy when Maine and Pennsylvania both claimed that they were the birthplace of the beloved sweet treat.  Since then, Maine has declared the whoopie pie its official state treat (not to be confused with the official state dessert, which is blueberry pie) and even decided to go a step further to show Pennsylvania who the whoopie pie boss really is.  On March 26, 2011 the world’s largest whoopie pie was constructed in South Portland, ME, weighing in at 1,062 pounds—a whopping whoopie compared to Pennsylvania’s meager 200 pound whoopie.  Looks like Maine has outdone Pennsylvania in the sweets department for now, despite the not-so-picture-perfect mega whoopie.

(You can even see some regular sized whoopies plopped in the middle of the gaping cracks, as if to try and patch them together).

To be honest, even though there is a lot of hoopla over this “BFO” or Big Fat Oreo, I haven’t found one up to par.  I am a whoopie pie fan but the ones I’ve had here are merely too-moist cake with Betty Crocker vanilla frosting smeared in between.  Sorry, Maine, but I need a whoopie pie that lives up to the name.  I still have another week here—the search continues.

Maine Retreat

So I’ve been in Maine for almost a week now with the family and I am going to be here for another week.  Maine for two weeks?  Sounded boring at first—that was, until I set an intention for my time here.  I vowed I would spend my time focusing on writing, exercising, reading, and just soaking myself in my own little world of creativity.  Even more importantly, I didn’t tell myself I have to write this much each day, I have to do this and get this done by then, blah blah blah.  I just generally told myself I would use this as a ‘ME’ retreat (which is funny because ME are the initials for Maine) to get back in touch with what I love.  

So far, so great.  I finished a novel, started another one, have been reading poetry, writing poetry, meditating, doing yoga, going for walks, and I even spent four hours yesterday drawing!  Another great breakthrough—every morning when I wake up I have been free writing, long hand, in my journal for as long as I need (a tip I picked up from ZenHabits).  Before I even start the day and fill my mouth with coffee and my head with computer pixels, I just write.  One day I wrote about my dream, another day I wrote about what I was thinking during my meditation, and the other morning I wrote the beginnings of a short story.  

This retreat really filtered out all the distractions that I find back home and it has really released all the pent up creativity that has been bringing me down lately.  I’ve felt unsuccessful, like I’ve been wasting my time because I haven’t been writing pages and pages each day.  I have found all sorts of outlets of creativity here—not just writing—that have made me feel whole again and satisfied.  I have taken little steps each day—five minute meditation, ten minute yoga, thirty minute walk, thirty minutes of writing—to feel fulfilled by the end of the day.  I’ve been trying to stay in the present instead of projecting future goals and whatnot.  By living fully in the present, I find myself doing what I want in that moment and spending as long as I need on it.  Without time limits and goals, I’ve been much more productive than usual.

Bottom line: It’s okay to let go.  It’s okay to input rather than output.  It’s okay to soak rather than stir.  Let yourself have a week or two to take in creativity rather than feeling you need to produce it like a creative factory.  Take everything in, appreciate it, meditate on it, and it will settle inside you and eventually spill out in the form of a beautiful poem, story, drawing, song, etc.

Ultralite Powered by Tumblr | Designed by:Doinwork