There are about a million things that can get me in hardcore writing mode. Usually, it's tragedy or triumph. So with the Sandy Hook shooting and a combination of Calvin Harris' Sweet Nothing Song, I'm feeling more than a little driven at the moment.
I guess since I'm a writer and editor and whatnot, I'm supposed to be building a platform with this blog. Pish posh. That's not who I am. I've never been a platform builder. I'm a very extremely, bluntly, unnervingly honest person. You ready? Here I go...
The main chorus in that song I'm listening to is, "I'm living on such sweet nothing." That's how I feel. I am living on something that feels wonderfully empty. I mean, I'm pulling from something that's not even there. And I realize I am what most people are, or at least should be: hopeful.
I live from day to day hoping in something that isn't brought to the forefront of our lives. In the news, children are being murdered in their classrooms and movie theaters. We blow up buildings for our religions. We condemn who people love. We hate others because they are not what we want them to be. What in recent news has given me reason to have this hope? NOTHING. But... it's still there....
I'm living on such sweet nothing.
It's that hope that wakes me up every day. It's my hope for my friends and family to see them prosper. But, almost every day my heart is breaking when things continue to go wrong. The miracle (and I really do believe it's a miracle) is that I still have hope. I still have faith in people. I will always write about people like that.
I'm not talking about that blind happy hope. I certainly don't have that. I have that quiet little hope that reminds me what it felt like when things were easy. How a daisy was an apology or when a bandaid fixed those cuts. Something in me tells me that this hope is far stronger than the other kind. That other kind can be stolen, robbed, and stripped from us. This hope is one that no one can take.
So, I'll end with my the usual writer tip. Don't let your characters have this false fleeting hope. It's fake and everyone will hate your character for not understanding what pain feels like. No one likes those bright chipper people who have no pain. If that's what your character portrays to the world, that's fine. We all do that in one way or another. But, I better see a freaking break down behind closed doors. And I need the hope too. Give me a reason to care. Show me they are just like me.