Jorth stood at the crossroads, and examined the signpost in front of her. There were three forks in the road. The one directly in front of her went straight on ahead, with no visible turns or twists as far as the road went to the horizon in front. The road was called “Go On As You Are Way”. Hmm, thought Jorth. Even though the road was very well maintained, and the path seemed like an easy walk, the way seemed shrouded with an air of dull predictability. Yearning for a bit more excitement, Jorth looked at the other options.
The road that led off to the right went straight down into a deep gully. Jorth could feel a cold wind coming from that direction, and the road itself was strewn with rocks and potholes. The signpost declared that road was called “Never Take A Chance Street”, and underneath in smaller letters read “To Regret Avenue”. Something about the road itself gave Jorth the heebie jeebies, so she turned and looked at the last option.
This road, called “Give It A Go Lane” seemed to meander about a fair amount. There were, by the looks of things, a series of hills that rose up and then fell quite steeply. Hillwalking, thought Jorth, is pretty hard work, but the view from the top is always magnificent. Looking harder, Jorth realised that unlike the others, this road wasn’t even paved. It was more of a path, and it struck Jorth that if one didn’t keep one’s wits about them, then you could quite easily get lost.
She stood for a few moments, weighing up the options in her mind. Which life path should she choose? Regret Avenue didn’t sound like the sort of place she was keen on visiting, so it came down to the other two. She gazed hard at the sign, and thought about the difficulties each presented. “Go On As You Are Way” seemed clean and prosperous enough, but where, thought Jorth, was the sense of adventure? Would there be any feeling of achievement from walking along a dead straight road? “Give It A Go Lane”, however, seemed to present obstacles of its own. Still, thought Jorth, you’ve only got one life. You may as well do what feels right.
Hoisting her backpack on, she began to walk along the faint path in the grass. The afternoon, it must be said, was a spectacular one. Birdsong filled the warm summer air, and scent of meadow flowers wafted delightfully on the gentle breeze. "Oh!", exclaimed Jorth, "this isn’t too bad at all." She walked on for a while, and was just passing a large tree when a voice spoke out to her. “Yes, it always seems fine at the beginning, when you are full of enthusiasm and optimism, but how will you go after days and days of climbing up hills, then climbing back down hills, picking your way through when the path seems to have disappeared, all the while trying to keep dry whilst storms rage around you, hmmm?
"What the fuck?" thought Jorth in a panic. She was just beginning to open her mouth when the voice said “And PLEASE don’t say “OMG, it’s a talking tree! I expect you authors to be more original that that!”
Jorth shut her mouth stupidly, and gazed at the tree. Even though she couldn’t make out any facial features at all, tree seemed to be looking expectantly at her, so she said “What sort of tree are you, um, Mr. Tree sir?”
The tree waved its arms? branches? impressively around and said in a loud booming voice “I am the tree born of the Seed of Doubt!
"Oh. Hello." said Jorth. “How did you know I wished to become an author?
“Part of my job description”, said the tree "is to know the true desires of the heart of all who pass by." Eyeing her shrewdly, the tree said “The other part of the job description is to warn you – go past me and there is no turning back. The way ahead can be littered with many dangers to aspiring authors like yourself. The path may become faint, or disappear all together. There are rocks and branches that may trip you up, and no helping hands to pick you up again and dust you off. There will even, I dare say, be rejection letters!”
Jorth looked at the path in front. She could see that the journey may indeed be hard, but for all that she felt compelled to continue on. She was just about to open her mouth to speak, when the tree said “But you’ll go on regardless, won’t you? Very well. Use your courage, dear author, when the writing seems hard. Use your imagination, when the words won’t flow. Use your ingenuity to come up with the most incredible plot devices. Use your gift wisely to produce only your best, and let it touch the hearts, the minds, the souls of those who grant you the privilege of reading the words you write. But most of all, I implore you – use recycled paper, won’t you? There’s a dear."
With one last flutter of the branch waving her onwards, the tree fell silent one more. And with nary a backwards glance, Jorth walked on.
The little tale above is, I suppose, a roundabout way of telling you all that I've been accepted into a professional writing and editing course. So I'll be leaving my job at Tessuti Fabrics and focusing on become a writer. Wooooo! Exciting times ahead! But fear not - there shall still be plenty of crafting and sewing around these parts. In fact, since I figure that I'll need to exercise my writing muscles, I plan to post here on a daily basis (fingers crossed!)
Thanks to Tessuti for having me for the last two years - it's been great. But now I must enter the writing wilderness. Wish me luck!
>> Thursday, June 09, 2011 – Writing