This morning, I sat on our front porch in the cool of the summer solstice. As is true of most old houses and even the newest farmhouses, the porch is where the best thinking happens. It’s a between space, a space for observation, a space for deep breaths and a whole lot of not doing.
As I sat, I heard our resident mockingbird singing away from the top of our plum tree. He was belting out his best tune, a compilation of the songs he’s heard others sing but a song still all his own. I could just see his outline – the gentle curl down his head to his neck, the sharp balance of his straight tail – but I could hear him loud and clear. . . every single note.
Sometimes as writers, we think we have nothing new to say. Or we think we need to write the way this person or that person does. Or we think that our story or our style or our ideas are weak and lame or just plain awful. At least I know I think those things quite often.
But this morning I was reminded that my job is to get to the top my tree in my space and sing the song only I can create, even if it’s cobbled together from songs I’ve already heard.
Take heart, my friends. No one but you can write what you have to write. No one. So sing your song and sing it loud, writers. We’ll hear every note.
This weekend, a group of writers is joining us here on the farm for our Writers’ Retreat. There’s still time and space to join us if you’d like. Get the details and sign-up here.