Quality is not something I can predict.
I live the life of an artist, so I don't abide by very many routines. I don't thrive in a situation where I need to do the same thing over and over again, or really the same thing twice. Bring me something new in an environment I know, and I'm all about it. Whether the experiece is epically perfect or miserably disappointing, I'm not likely to do it exactly that say way again. You just never know when quality will come to stay.
So, I can't sit down at my laptop, my notebook, or my sketchpad and think, "This! Ah, this! This is what we've all been waiting for. Here we go!" And then swing my arm like a pitcher's wind up, and release the words onto the page.
I wish it happened that way. Wouldn't that be great?
It's a question of quantity. I think quantity is the gateway to quality.
When I write everyday, there's a lot of nonsense that I don't need, don't use, and don't even really want anymore. But if I write a lot, then sometimes out of the deep blue sky comes the perfect metaphor.
I wish I were a creative cook, finding so many exciting recipes for my children. But they don't love exciting recipes. They love spaghetti. So, if I keep giving them spaghetti so many times a week, even though it's not gourmet and it's nothing but a box of noodles and jar of sauce, then a longstanding tradition might be born. They'll come home from college and say, "Mom, how about some spaghetti?" And quality will have been born.
Robb and I went on probably a thousand dates in the course of our marriage. But when I look back over the whole of them, it's not necessarily the most elaborate that win the sparkly award of remembering. Some of my favorites emerge from experiences that weren't really 'dates' at all - when we were fixing dinner together, folding laundry together, planting petunias, sorting baby clothes, taking a walk around the neighborhood, or grabbing a hot dog and chips at the cart outside Home Depot.
Now, believe you me, we had some s-t-e-l-l-a-r dates. But they didn't come out of nowhere. They were born of a life together. They were born of a lot of days and meals and errands and chores.
If I live a lot of life, then some amazing, glittery, sparkling moments will rise to the top.
Quantity is the gateway to Quality.
this is so true! i think i will share this blog entry on our pre engagement retreat we are leading this coming weekend...i was very moved by your story at the storyline conference and have ordered your book as well for a friend in a very similar situation. thanks for sharing your heart.