Hi, folks, I'm continuing my series on the heart and soul of story. This week I'm going to chat about how joy fuels the heart and soul of story. To me, joy is much deeper than a feeling of happiness, though it is that. Over the years, a state of mind has developed within me as I write and draw. It's resistant to the storms of life, like I've been surrounded by a giant levee keeps me from ever being flooded with despair for too long. The drainage is good. Flood waters recede quickly and all the buildings are sturdy and stay put in catastrophe. I might weep for a night about another rejection, but then I wake the next morning ready to work again.
Every time I learn a new skill as a writer, or overcome a plot problem, or unlock a new character trait as I am creating, I feel a surge of joy. After writing for so long, I feel like I've turned toward the true north of my creative heart. I've settled on my journey, finding confidence and hope. Where is all the joy coming from? The saver of souls for me. The world seems so unsettled these days. Fear sends folks skittering one way and then another. We are inundated by floods of information in this age of information. And yet we can find shelter in this flood. We can connect with joy and write stories that make a difference.
Here is my little recipe into that joy. Work even when you are hoping against hope. Work even if there are voices real and imagined telling you writing is a waste of time. Resist the desire to write about the "hot topics" and write about what is bright and beautiful to you. Write about what is great and strong to you. Be fearless. Open yourself up to learn from all the people in your in life, especially the people who rub you the wrong way. When you do these things, you will be surprised by joy. Truth: that joy that comes to you, that joy is your strength. Let it permeate everything you do.
I hope you come back next week as a start a new series. I am so glad you have dropped by.
Here is a doodle for you.
I love to tell the story, because I know ’tis true;
It satisfies my longings as nothing else can do. Arabella Katherine Hankey