I have trouble writing when I’m traveling. I’ve been traveling a bit. I’ve been having trouble writing…
Perhaps spurred by my own self-doubt over the past few days, I’ve been contemplating originality. What it means to make something new. What must be in place before the thought of creation can even be entertained. How many contributors are involved in something as simple as this sentence.
I write for myself here, using borrowed words and shapes from centuries of inherited forms of communication. I type on technology perfected by at least thousands of minds. To some extent, I think it must be the case, my thoughts are bound by an environment that has surrounded me. How I write, what I write, in what form I publish those writings. They are not mine. The thoughts – I feel I make them – but perhaps I only pull them from some prefabricated knowledge store. A librarian for the ideas of others – organizing, distributing, gazing upon them – so familiar with some of them I take subconscious possession.
You too, certainly? Every author I’ve read. Every quote I adore. Not mine, not theirs. I detest the notion that man is some innately social creature – but how can I escape assigning true ownership of anything to anyone but “us”?
I painted last quarter – charcoal, paints, graphite, paper, marker, gel ink – I made marks. But now I wonder if I did not steal them. I took some-one’s line, shape, color – I took them and threw them down and called them all mine based on the way they fell. It bothers me slightly.
But, there is no escape. It must always be this way. I have tried to tame raw thoughts – wordless, shapeless, soundless mental activity. My own – but overwhelming. Unintelligible. Headache inducing. Nearly maddening.
I don’t know how to relate my frustration here. Lend me your thoughts… I need to put them on the shelf.