I just recently began to talk about my desire to write. The first person I told was my husband-his reaction startled me. “You do?” he said incredulously. “I knew that you liked to write papers for school, but are you talking about writing books?” I shamefully realized how deeply I had hidden my creative voice. This element of my being that I engaged so frequently with in my own internal dialogue was not being given any audience. I became aware of the potential contribution that existed and realized that I had to facilitate this into reality. After all, the one person who knows me best in the world was unaware of my appetite for writing. I had obviously done an expert job at keeping this from the world. I knew then what I must do…it was time to introduce my executive assistant to the creative director…my muse…my voice. She is quite fascinating (and somewhat angry at having been shunned for the last few years).
When I first began writing as a child, I had a rudimentary process. An idea would come, and a subsequent mess of mental activity would begin. I likened it to a little elf sitting at a desk in my brain furiously scribbling. She was sharp-tongued with her criticism and badgered me relentlessly until I was able to get something down on paper. When I was done, we would share it. It was a great relationship. Unfortunately, as I alluded to, she went on hiatus for many years. She became frustrated with throwing out the creative spark only to have it muffled by my lack of attention. Recently, I allowed her whispers in my ear. Her timing was impeccable as usual.
I am quite sure her name is Ada. When I was little, my grandfather would tease me and say “if you take the ‘man’ out of your name, you would be Ada”. At seven, this was hilarious to me. Ada is a ruthless, sarcastic, quick-witted broad who chain smokes. She is tall and slight-framed with Harry Potter glasses and an affinity for jeans and college emblazoned sweatshirts. Her diet consists of coffee and take out, and she suffers terribly from insomnia. When the mood is right and Christopher Cross is playing, she is prolific.
Our conversations are wordless and our exchanges are more aptly thought of in terms of creative consultations. Although I neglected her existence for years, she was patient. She knew I was not ready. Ada is the sponge of my brain-absorbing everyday experiences and storing them to be wrung out in the form of a concept. I trust her implicitly and am thankful for her fearlessness.
I believe that we all have these inspirational murmurs inside of us although we do not all heed their invitations. For some of us though, their pleas are all-encompassing and lead us to greater depths of living.