This picture is a door on a barn we are purchasing next to our property in PA. You can tell by the marks and peeling paint it's gone through many memories. Battle scars. It stood up to a tornado that passed through years ago, riding it out without a scratch while dozens of trees fell around it.
My husband used to own a horse that resided behind these doors. When I first met Curt, I was ecstatic that he owned such an animal. I think that might have been part of his appeal. He lived on a farm. I begged him to let us ride Flash,
Being a young man who wanted to please, he saddled up the old horse, and he loaded me behind him. I clung to Curt's waist as we plodded up the back mountain. Unfortunately, it was a short ride. When he turned Flash in the direction of the barn, the horse lived up to her name. In a flash, the ride was over. Like a horse to the barn...so the saying goes.
I'm a lot like that barn door.
I like peeling paint. Fingerprints. Erosion. Wear and tear. That tells me I've lived and loved. My writing is also like this door. It's been worn down over the years through rejections and harsh critiques. I've gotten a few bumps and bruises. Sometimes I imagine my work creaks when I open a new story. But here's the thing, my desire to write is still standing. I'm still writing, My door to my thoughts are still open.
And like a horse to the barn, I can't wait to get to my desk and write each day.
If your writing has been tested through time, be proud of the wear and tear you've gone through as you grow as a writer, If a tornado tries to blow you over, hang on. You can come through it. We develop stronger skills the more storms we go through.
My husband plans to paint these doors a fresh coat of white this fall. Part of me hates the thought of covering all that history. I like imaging the past. Conjuring up memories.
But I also know I can do that only so long. I need to move forward. Pack the memories away--learn new skills. Stretch my muscles. My next book will be much different than my others. Maybe I'll be adding a few more chips to my door but that's a writer's life.
Have you had recent writing battle scars?