Writers are a scab-picking, zit-popping, scalp-scratching bunch who care not so much for the blood let as for the sound, the feel, the sucking away as flesh leaves itself to open a space that can only be seemingly seamless in its ease, and yet reveals the easy seams of a clean tear.
Writers dig in to the truths that are the ugliest. We write about ourselves and ourselves within others. We point the light--and even distort it for our own purposes. We bend the mind by speaking directly into the ear in ways others cannot. We change the world with little more than the electricity and force of our own selves.
And at all times, writers turn the knife inward, perform self-surgery, defend by amputation. Writers plunge their hands, elbow-deep, in the blood and let it flow over their clothes just for the pleasure of inspecting the sinew that holds the body in motion.
I failed as a writer this year because I realized fairly early on that my dream of writing a book about the year of being a mom would come at odds with my year of being a mom--in that I would have to turn the knife on me and on "my child" and on my husband, and while I could see my own blood without flinching, theirs made me cringe deeply. I must now complete the major task at hand, which requires my dissection of others' writing and lives. But then I will have to pull up my big girl panties and delve into the not-quite-a-year of not-quite-parenting. I will be honing my knife and saving up my pain meds for those around me.
Writers are a scab-picking, zit-popping, scalp-scratching bunch.