Times New Roman…12 pt font…double space…indent first line a half inch.
Those simple settings represent a new slate for me. A new beginning. A new story. It’s been my routine, my superstitious ritual, for years. The only thing occurring before the setup is the tiny spark of a storyline.
There’s something so comforting, yet so very unsettling, about starting a new story. Characters, scenery, plots and emotions swirl through my head almost too fast to commit to computer memory. Mad dashes to the old desktop at 2:00 a.m. become routine as a new story unfolds. Lives develop within the parameters of font and formatting like a flower opening at dawn. Awe-inspiring and dizzying in it’s perfect complexity. I marvel as the story flows and weaves and tells me more about myself than I ever knew. All the good and all the bad inside me play out through words and I’m liberated, absolved from the responsibility of being me. All that I want and want to destroy, all that I love and hate, all that I cannot make happen in my own life is easily accomplished with a simple keystroke.
And it starts with a new page and an established routine. Times New Roman…12 pt font…double space…indent first line a half inch.
How incredibly liberating to be a writer. How incredibly lucky I am to have people and places dance in my head with reckless abandon. How pure and simple and intoxicating to have the exact endings I want for my characters. No relying on luck or karma or a third person for intercession. With new pages I make my own luck. I am Karma. And that third person?
They are perfectly in sync with me. I love new. It always goes my way.