Ideas in Search of an Audience
By James Napier
Jane has been struggling unsuccessfully for years to get me out of her head and onto the printed page.
I’ve been patient with her, but my patience is wearing thin.
I need to see results and fast, if you know what I mean.
I mean, how long is it going to take Jane to write this blasted novel?
She’s a nice person, I won’t kick about that, but she badly lacks concentration and focus.
Jane scatters her energies and between spending too much time on the telephone, too much on the internet reading what others say about writing, and too much time starting, stopping, tossing away what she’s written, I have almost lost faith in Jane’s ability to finish her novel.
It’s a sad day when an Idea loses faith in its author.
If an Idea expects you to believe in it, that Idea must first believe in itself as well as the writer it is trusting to deliver itself into a reader’s hands.
Please, don’t tell me you’ve given up real books and are reading them online? Occasionally, perhaps, I can see why you might do that. We ideas, however, enjoy being held just like you do, so please think about that the next time you go online.
Now, I’m not exactly the same thing as your Imagination. The bigger Entity we Ideas refer to as Imagination is the Source that generates us.
We are offshoots of Imagination, but we are not Imagination itself even though some of us may last beyond your concept of forever.
We Ideas consider ourselves members of a very large family of brothers and sisters. How you treat the least to the greatest of us is felt by the entire family.
And, we Ideas do not merely float around like astroids in the spaces of your mind. We are alive and active, as you are, and we seek to meet you personally on the written page.
You authors have to meet us first before you can meet your audiences, at book signing events for example. Without us, there is no audience to meet, greet, and sell your lovely books to.
The books that contain us, if you could see them subatomically, are whirling masses of energy, and housed in the sacred spaces of inbetweenness; there we are!
Each of us are, possessing our own unique energy signatures, waiting for you, dear author, to build a tunnel of intent from your mind to our location, like a bridge in your realm makes possible the movement of your earth vehicles from one city to another.
The intensity of your intent spins energy freeways into existence, making possible travel from our positions in non-locality to your dimension on the other side.
When we leave non-locality to take up residence in your mind, we call that act crossing over!
Jane Learningham has been working on her novel off and on for ten years. She is still bogged down in trivia and minutia that does nothing to propel her story forward.
Right now, I feel like screaming, “Jane, how long does it take to tell the story of American women who replaced men in factories after these men were dispatched by Uncle Sam to fight the Axis powers in World War II?”
Jane has yet to find a believable love conflict such as a woman ripped apart emotionally because of a choice she must make between two soldiers when they returrn from the war overseas.
“Jane, it’s not that difficult!”
You see, I am the Idea that love choices are not always a straightforward matter, yet Jane is turning what could be a great love story into an historical document no one will ever publish.
See my point?
I am the love that will be won as well as the love another will lose. So, I hope you are able to see why I am so anxious to see how things turn out. You, Jane, cast the deciding vote and I hope it doesn’t take you years to decide.
Years ago, we put the idea for this novel into Jane’s mind. As a conscientious librarian she had potential we could see.
Her knowledge about the contribution women made to the war effort intrigued us.
In her thoughts, we made her an offer and she accepted.
We have never wavered in our commitment that Jane write this novel, but she has surely vascillated back and forth about her ability to do so more times than we expected.
It is possible, and I have seen it happen before, for a person to fire themselves from an assignment due to a lack of confidence in their ability to complete it.
Jane is perilously close to doing just that.
Then, let’s address Jane’s fiddling around.. You can’t write and fiddle at the same time.
My Idea colleagues and I have tried to instruct Jane in the craft of writing during her dreams.
You call it Inspiration. We call it a practical necessity.
Without Inspiration from us, imagine what your world would be like? You, minus scenery, buildings, homes, factories, schools, shopping centers, running around trying to figure out where you are.
Some authors try to take sole credit for their work and when their egos get too big we reassign the One they like to call the Muse.
After all, humility is always appreciated, especially when an author remembers to credit us for our contribution.
It’s not that we have ego needs like you, but we do have to watch an author closely to make sure his or her head doesn’t balloon so much that judgment is impaired and the quality of their writing deteriorates.
When an author is more trouble than he or she is worth, we let them taste success and then, as they say, pull the old plug.
You might keep that in mind.
When you write a book or article, you represent us as much as your works represent you.
We ask that you consider us your partner, rather than isolated this and thats you’re struggling to get on paper.
Please, please, please stop all that whining about writing being so difficult.
Why do we ask you to edit? We expect you to represent us accurately and truthfully. Look at your contract with us. When you agreed to become a writer, you signed the forms agreeing, among other things, to edit your work until you got us right.
So, have fun. We Ideas enjoy being tickled as you shift and rearrange us.
If you cross out a good Idea, don’t worry, it skidaddles to an author who is able to make better use of its talents.
There’s no need to worry that you’ve murdered one of us. Ease your mind about that and write.
Does this ease your mind?
We know writing requires time and commitment on your part. It may even require years of painstaking research to complete your book, but consider that the creative life you insisted on having is like is a paycheck you issue to yourself to every day.
You are the payor as well as the payee. We are the Idea bank on which your check is drawn.
Don’t worry, you cannot drain our resources. So, put as many big idea numbers into your check as you’re comfortable carrying around in your mind.
We will not guarantee a specific number of earth dollars or, as we call them here, survival tokens, but let me remind you of what our friend Joseph Campbell wrote:
“If you follow your bliss,
you will always have your bliss
money or not.”
My Idea friends and I will keep you busy if you will stay busy and not dilly dally around.
For every excuse you find not to write, the fewer new ideas will come to you to write about.
A good writer is always eager, thirsty, and hungry for more Ideas, and more is our specialty.
We’re good at supplying more.
Trust me on that account.
Here’s the message we’re trying to get across to Jane. Why, we ask, isn’t Jane confident about her abilities any more? She used to be.
It isn’t that she’s writing her novel and it’s going nowhere that’s eroding her confdence. We Ideas say it’s the NOT WRITING that’s doing the undermining job.
If Jane could only see herself writing several hours nightly. If only she could see herself finding an agent who loves her work. If only she could believe a publishing company exists that is looking for and eager to find a project such as hers. If only Jane could see herself autographing books for appreciative readers.
If only, if only, if only, there are so many if only’s that we wish Jane would imaginatively explore.
Jane’s method, however, is to MOPE.
What is going on with this girl? That’s what all of us here are wondering.
“Hey, Jane! What’s going on?”
Jane also needs to practice silencing her chattery mind and let more of us (hold on a second: “Say, is it we or us? No answer. Hmmmm) Ideas get through to her.
She also rushes about like a you know what with its head cuf off.
Silence, as we’ve tried to tell her many times, turns on a big light bulb inside, but Jane’s too busy surfing the net looking for, guess what, Ideas!
Some Ideas work better in the minds of certain people better than they do in the minds of others.
Maybe Jane needs to get clear on whether she’s ever going to write this book and, if not, be honest with herself and simply STOP.
I promise to understand if Jane wants out of our agreement and would like to try something else.
I do, however, expect her to make some kind of decision–and soon, because I’m ready to be read.
There are so many of us who are eager to reach our expectant audiences through you, our chosen writers.
Yes, we can send you ideas while you sleep, but often it takes all night to clear the channels that allow us to get through to you and, by then, your alarm is going off.
We do use this method, but again let me point out that until you paint us, draw us, sculpt us, write us, dance us, sing us, invent us, or perhaps design a delightful whatever for your living space, we are stopped at the border crossing called your skull from traveling any deeper into your world.
My message to Jane is this: I am a little restless these days, and it’s up to you to decide what’s to be done about that.
I seek the wider audiences you also want to reach. About that we agree, but if you don’t get on the stick, as they say, another mind will be taking over what you have been given ten years to accomplish.
Jane, talented or not, we care about you, and we want you to know that writing isn’t the agony you believe it is, or that you’ve turned it into.
Inside your mind you are like a god able to create whatever to your liking. You usually get your way which is doing anyting to prevent yourself from writing; you only get moving,when one of my fellow Ideas becomes insistent that he or she is being neglected to the detriment of your story.
Writers talk to each other about how a character often takes over and swings their story in a whole different direction than they planned.
Welcome this, because it shows we care enough about your project to turn it into the best possible example of your skills as an author.
Isn’t this what you really want?
I ask you to imagine a world in which only you existed, Jane. If you had no audience to write for, real or imagined, would you care about writing the way you say you do now?
You certainly couldn’t make the world a better place because there would be no people around to make better.
See my point?
Imagine Jane, will you, that a vast audience is waiting for you to finish your novel. That they are eager to purchase and read it.
There will never be a better time to start over than now, don’t you think?
I still have confidence in you. Now, give back to me the confidence I have in you in the form of a book, the novel you know you and only you were born to write.
So, power up your intensity and energy level a and get busy, please! Write yourself into a state of astonishment now and then. It will do wonders for your morale and make all those lubby dubby chemicals in your body feel, oh, so good!
Does this make sense to you? If it doesn’t, WHY are you writing at all?
Jane, you do ustify the fact that you are not writing the story and its chapters we are placing in your mind. Listen to me, Jane: It is more fun to simply write than using valuable writing time to manufacture lame excuses about why you never have time.
Become the novelist prophet of your own future in the way Gustave Flaubert viewed writing.
He wrote, “It is a delicious thing to write, to be no longer yourself, but to move in an entire universe of your own creating. Today, for instance, as man and woman, both lover and mistress, I rode in a forest on an autumn afternoon under the yellow leaves, and I was also the horse, the leaves, the wind, the words my people uttered, even the red sun that made them almost close their love-drowned eyes.”
There’s your payoff, Jane, whether or not a publisher ever sends you check. Can you see this and simply begin to write from your love of writing while letting the chips (and maybe some day, royalties) fall wherever they may?
Stop waffling and ask yourself, “At this moment, what am I saying to myself about finishing my novel?” for that is what is crystallizing in your manifest world.
Look, Jane! Over there.
It’s your legal pad, the one you like writing in. Sign off your computer. You checked e-mail an hour ago. The night is young. It is yours to do with as you choose.
“Early tomorrow you’ll get to,” you say? That’s fine.
I’ll be up and waiting to say good morning when you arise. You will write, won’t you?
Yes, coffee if you need it is fine.
“How will I get my novel published?” you are asking. “Please, no more research about markets and publishers, Jane. Write first. May I remind you, the book that hasn’t been written cannot be published.
Oh, and don’t forget to dim or switch off your bedroom light as well as your surface mind.
Now, if you’re thinking about US, then that’s a different story.
Have at it.
Your writing tablet’s close by, isn’t it Jane?
Just in case we drop off a brilliant idea or two later tonight?
After all, we never sleep.
And for goodness sake, don’t forget to write about them!
I write a Law of Attraction Blog/The Power of Intention. Just articles for your reading pleasure at http://www.dollarsloveme.blogspot.com – James