THE DUMPSTER: AN INTRODUCTION (Explanation, History, Rebirth)
It is part of the “writer’s etiquette.” Under no circumstances are you to apologize for your work. It is like when your date asks to kiss you, instead of just going for it. It’s an automatic turnoff. That being said, this is the first story I have completed in three years. I keep hearing Haruki Murakami’s words, “Writing is like catching a wave, and like a surfer, a writer cannot expect to catch a wave perfectly every time. Once you get the rhythm of the waves, the waves are yours, so when I am writing short stories I try to write as many as I can. The point is to write a lot and you can find the natural rhythm of the waves.” I have told myself that the rythym is coming; I merely have to continue doing the work.
Additionally, I know it is important for me to post my work, even in the early stages of my return to fiction. It is a way of letting go of control, of harsh self-critisim, and to give others the opportunity to enjoy what I have produced. Afterall that is why I write in the first place. To be of service to others through my creativity.
The Dumpster was born from a free writing prompt. I didn’t end up including the writing prompt in the final version of the story, but the facilitator said, as our small group sat huddled together at the Del Mar Pannikin Coffee House, “okay for fifteen minutes write about this: I found it in the dumpster.” All morning I had been struggling with the prompts, and then suddenly I found myself writing the first two pages of this story.
What I have learned over the past few weeks, is that it is not my responsibility to control when or how or why something creative emerges. My only responsibility is to sit at my writing desk, to hold the space, and let the creativity come as it chooses. It always surprises me in the way that it manifests. What a delight.