Because, as it turns out, people don't touch your life without causing ripples.
Or cannonball splashes.
So, last fall, an awesome, one-of-a-kind man waltzed into my life. And it turned my writing world upside-down.
First of all, I was distracted. Ah-hem. Yep, that probably doesn't need to be explained. He was on my brain almost all the time, and I didn't really want to think about much else.
Secondly, I was busier. Normal writing times were replaced with long phone calls. My life focus shifted from writing "the best story ever" to building a relationship that would potentially last for the rest of my earth-based existence.
Of course, when I did get a minute to write, I wanted to spend it journaling about him. Because real life was suddenly more important to me than my imaginary one. Go figure.
So that resulted in several months of very little creative writing. Which sounds bad. But really isn't. Because...
...it made me take a break from pouring out and take some time to reflect on who I am and who I want to be. Maybe not all boyfriends are like this, but mine makes me think. And I began to see ways that I am odd...and difficult...and unique...and gifted. I, like a character in a book, am full of both strengths and weaknesses, and there is nothing like a boyfriend to help you see yourself for who you are. All those months of journaling were as much about looking at myself as it was in looking at him. And knowing who you are makes you a stronger writer.
But my boyfriend did more than just help me understand myself better. Because, as it turns out, he also has a passion for epic stories. And he's a genius. But in a different way than I am. We compliment each other. And he questions EVERYTHING. Which makes me think about life in a more in-depth way than I have in a long time.
I don't know about you, but my favorite writing times are when I have something to say -- something unique and original, something deeper than plot and characters and yet intricately intertwined with them. I don't want to write things that I have been taught. I want to write things that I discovered for myself. And that means I have to stop and think about how life works and why.
When I am caught up in work and school, that doesn't leave much time for pondering the meaning of existence. It took someone (who cared enough about me to make me slow down and come up with answers) to reawaken the dreamer that I used to be before life got so busy.
Suddenly I am plumbing depths that haven't been touched in a long time, and my stories are churning up on the inside of me.
And that, my friends, is how a boyfriend affects your writing.