I am still thinking about Stella. It’s been months since I worked on that project, but I’ve gone back and read some of the excerpts I posted. In my own heart, I believe it’s some of the strongest writing I’ve done.
But my own thoughts have carried me in a different direction, different from the one I thought Stella was headed. At the same time, even those months back, I see hints in her of where I am now, of the Dominant fighting the submissive. I stop to wonder, can we hold both in the same shell? Can the two live in the same ‘house’ and co-exist? Or perhaps do different people bring out different sides to play? Is it about finding what fits most comfortably in any given moment?
Perhaps Stella should come with me. I think about her a lot. I don’t know if she is me, or a composite of me; I don’t know if she’s an ideal I carry in my mind, a creation through which I can live vicariously. Perhaps she’s the parts of me I like. Or the ones I don’t like. All I know is, she’s here. She doesn’t appear to be leaving.
I still bow up at the thought of writing a ‘novel.’ It’s almost a dirty word in the reaction it gets from me. Part of Stella is trying to figure out how and where she fits. How many words is she? How many words am I? Sometimes I feel like the Encyclopedia Brittanica. Most often these days I feel like a status update. What am I? I’m fine.
She’s not leaving though. Not dying out or growing weaker. Even while I can’t seem to find the words right now, she’s hovering there, tapping me on the shoulder.
I also wonder if I’m up to publishing again. If I pull her out here where all can see, do I have what it takes to take it all the way? And does it matter whether the world knows her or not?
I think these thoughts while I go through my days, while I work in the garden, care for the animals, walk the dog, prepare dinner, or watch TV at night. I get flashes of inspiration while I’m doing laundry or cleaning the toilet. They’re like mists right now. I can’t catch them. That’s not important; what is important is that they’re there.