Jan 22, 2015

What I Learned While Deboning a Chicken

by Kari Diane Pike

Life offers very few guarantees. I can guarantee you, however, that the moment I get elbow deep in bread dough, my phone will ring or someone will knock on my door. Every single time. Oh, and something else. I can usually count on having a brilliant epiphany - the exact key I need to write the next great novel - while standing at the kitchen counter prepping raw chicken for the evening meal. By the time I wash my hands and run upstairs to my computer or notebook, the thought has disappeared. It's kind of like trying to get out the door for an important meeting and you know you just had your keys in your hand, but you can't find them anywhere. My daughter would say they have "invisiblated" (and you have her permission to use that word as often as you like - her goal is to get it put in the dictionary).

That happened to me last night. The thought came. It blew my mind. I oohed and awed at the fireworks going off in my head. But the sparks faded fast and I rushed to the sink repeating the key phrase in my head. I rushed up the stairs and flipped on my computer. The screen lit up. My mind went totally and completely blank. Nada. Nothing. *insert face palm here*

When I remembered that today is every other Thursday, I still came up with nothing. I flipped through my journal to look for inspiration. I dug through my closet and looked for past journals. I discovered that I am missing at least five of them. Ugh. What I did find - several old notebooks filled with random notes from past ANWA meetings and events. Now there's a treasure.

I came across notations I made the first time I met Tristi Pinkston. She taught a class on "Writer's Voice" at the ANWA writer's conference on March 12th of (year unknown). I'll share a highlight from my notes:

  • Be HONEST when you write. 
  • Be COURAGEOUS.
  • Don't pollute your pen. Recall the purpose for which [your] gift was given. The Spirit gives you inspiration - listen to it. HONOR it. The honesty you project will attract the reader. Identify with your own writing before you send it out for others to see and read. 
  • Pray to speak [write] with the tongue of angels - with the purpose of building the kingdom and honoring your gifts by being yourself. Only the Spirit can speak to other's hearts. 
  • PRAY. Tell Heavenly Father you want to be an instrument in His hands.
Another treasure I discovered - a mess of writing prompts and the scribbling I wrote in response. And you know what? Some of it is pretty good!

I'm still a bit disturbed that some of my journals came up missing. I know I had them when we moved in a year ago.  And even though the epiphany I experienced last night continues to evade my conscious thought (and to be totally honest here, yes, I did have to double check how to spell conscious), at least I'm headed in a better direction. 

So, what have I learned through this experience? I think I need to start wearing gloves when I work in the kitchen and keep my notebook and pen close to me at all times. That way I can tear the gloves off and throw them down - just like the hockey players do when they start a fight (I dated a hockey player once upon a time).  Then I can grab those slippery thoughts  before they skate away and hide. Plus, going through these piles of notes reminded me that I have the best support group and resources imaginable - first and foremost being my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Because without His influence, without His guidance through the gift of the Holy Spirit, I couldn't do this. Because of Him, I can do hard things. And one of these days, when the time is right, He will bring all things to my remembrance.

10 comments:

  1. My goodness! Your brain acts just like mine, Kari! I really, really need to write down what occurs at the moment it does so, because sure as shooting, it will be gone soon. I have a theory about that, hahaha!

    I hope you find your missing journals next time you go looking for them.

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    1. Do I really want to hear that theory, Marsha? I'm going with the "my brain is so full of information that it puts only those things pertinent to immediate survival in the forefront."

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  2. Use the voice recorder app on you S5 phone

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    1. That's a good thought...except it still requires clean hands...(and a pure heart). lol.

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  3. I thoroughly enjoyed this post. Thank you for sharing... The hockey player sentence with slippery thoughts skating away is brilliant. :)

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    1. Thank you for your kind words! I'm glad you enjoyed it.

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  4. Loved this post, probably because I can totally relate! (and it's well-written, too.)

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    1. Thanks Valerie! Although I'm sorry you can relate - LOL. I appreciate your kind comment. hugs~

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  5. Mine is always when I'm falling asleep. I think I actually wrote a poem or something about that on this blog a while back. Glad to see in not alone. Solidarity, sister.

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