I forgot how exuberantly "puppy" actual puppies are capable of being.
I was reminded, yesterday, when I was introduced rather unexpectedly to a yellow lab pup who was all legs and paws and bright blue eyes. I remembered, almost immediately, the entire pack of yellow labs my riding instructor kept at her ranch. They went everywhere together, it seemed, a teeming mass of golden tawniness, happy friendly energy bumbling everywhere, wet noses and slobbery tongues and solid bodies nudging enthusiastically into legs and knees and whatever else was within reach.
This puppy was precisely like that, came barreling toward me with no bark of warning or malicious intent. Just a huge pile of happiness as though he could instantly detect that I was someone he wanted to sniff and lick and share his energy with. He came racing after me not once but on four separate instances, which thoroughly baffled his humans because he'd never done anything like it before. Ever.
Ah, the innocent impulsive perceptiveness of youth. No filters, no fears, no preconceptions.
I've been stumbling upon reminders, recently, of projects and stories and muses that had gotten shuffled to the side over the past couple years. Other things required my focus and energies. It's not to say that they've returned in full vigor, but I have an increasing desire to drag them from the shadows, brush off the cobwebs, and play with them again. With outlines, this time, so that I have direction and a target to focus on, to maintain some motivation and course corrections without stagnating and getting sucked into the Bog of Eternal Stench.
Outlines are my nemesis. Plot arcs and the Things That Must Happen always trip me up. Finding the path to Satisfying Climax and Resolution is not one that comes easily. I'd much rather meander about in the meadows full of wildflowers, exploring worlds and character dynamics and to fuck with following the Generally Accepted Protocol of Storytelling. I've no fucking clue how to do it properly. I've no fucking clue, to be honest, why It Must Be Done This Way.
Conflicts are of course a part of any interactive dynamic. I have always despised the formulaic method of writing, and that doesn't just go for the cliched tropes of having the romantic leads first interacting in the third chapter, etc.
I need more organization, though. I've always been one for letting the muses loose to do as they please, but inevitably they trip up, freak out, and lose their momentum, running away from whatever it is they really need to confront. This is the case in at least three different stories I currently having sitting incomplete on my Writer's Desk. This is a personal vendetta against my own artistic methodology that I'm embroiled in, and it's demanding the sort of purging and careful reinvention that is never pleasant.
The most difficult part about this is that there's no topographical map I can whip out and land nav my way to the solution with a few quick azimuths to determine the most efficient course to the destination.
I suspect it will be the journey itself that is most beneficial for me. Still, the knowing won't make the process any easier. I am hoping to rediscover and reinforce my confidence in my storytelling abilities, along the way.
Puppy love is often rife with naivete, youthful blindness, and hormone-fueled passions that swiftly burn out and die.
But as the puppy reminded me, it's sometimes good to let yourself approach life and your passions with this sort of energetic disregard for mundane, mature concerns like safety, well-being, and logic. Moderation in all things, including sobriety and sanity.
Once more into the breach, my friends.