general endeavours

ship to oblivion is finished

general endeavours

This post goes something like this: I was really happy yesterday.

It feels extraordinarily silly to write about that, but I think it matters.

I should've written this yesterday! Whilst feeling the emotions and thinking the thoughts! But alas, I did not.

Part of the reason why I didn’t is the same reason why I’ve never been able to keep a journal, no matter how many of those my mother gifted me when I was a child in an attempt to encourage the habit. (Same goes for a blog, ironically, or at least one that is about myself.)

That reason is that I think in words. Not in the sense of hearing them, not quite in the sense of saying them either, but I think the way I write: the words, sentences, just kind of come to me. I don’t exactly conjure them. But I do almost see them, like you would see a hazy clip of newspaper clippings in a movie montage, and I edit them as I go—as I work through the thoughts.

So, what that means is that often it feels redundant to write things down. Which is a funny thing to say, when you’re a writer.

There’s a lot that tangles into that dynamic. I don’t want to talk about anything but the writing and why I was happy yesterday, but we’re going to have to take a detour before I get to that.


There’s a thought (there are words) that come to the forefront of my mind sometimes. That thought, those words, are “what am I alive for?”. There’s a lot of ways one can take that question, and you’re not allowed to take them in any way at all when it comes to me, because I’m going to tell you what I’m getting at.

There’s a similar question that people ask a lot. It’s a question I’m much less interested in, but it is nonetheless similar. That is “what’s our purpose?”.

You know—why are we on this Earth, why did God (general?) make us, et all. You know the one.

I insist that these are two very different questions, but for the purposes of this post they’ll both do, because for me the answer is one and the same, and it’s very simple.

That answer is art.

Saying it’s simple isn’t to say that reaching this answer was easy nor simple, but that once I did actually, truly, land on it, there’s been no doubt in my mind since. (Except, of course, when there is. But that’s a whole other story.)

“’Til death do us part, we do art” is the quote. I saw it on a t-shirt on Etsy once, and it feels like it perfectly summarizes my feelings on the topic, so I’ve carried it with me ever since. Call it purpose, destiny, reason, definition - make of it whatever concept you want, but to me there is nothing more self-evident about what we, and by extension me, are here for, than art.

And I’m a writer.

But as we have established, writing things down—or out, as it were—feels quite redundant sometimes.

So despite having written stories since the moment I knew how to write, I’ve never done this one thing: finish a story. At least not a grand story, a multi-chaptered one. And I’ve really wanted to!

I’d reached the conclusion that I just wasn’t capable of it. I didn’t reach it solemnly, I didn’t go through some test and determination process, but the evidence is in the pudding, and the pudding has a lot of unfinished drafts that faded off into never.

Except I am capable of it. Because I did! On my own, thrice!

general endeavours

For all four of my published and completed multi-chaptered stories, one thing holds true: I would never have done it if there was no one to share it with, i.e. if there was no one to read it, and if no one was engaging back.

Because as we’ve established, writing things down is redundant. I don’t need to do it for myself.

Twenty-Five Twenty-One in particular came to me at a time in my life where I had reached many such certainties. This one was “I’m just not a writer capable of those long multi-chaptered bodies of work I may so dearly enjoy” — but there were other certainties that the show basically directly disproved as well. (There are also others still that it “was there for” while I/they were put to the test, some quite ‘violently’ so.)

And so…

I was really happy, yesterday.

I published the last chapter of ship to oblivion — in many ways the hardest and most precious story I’ve ever written — on Friday, and by all means I almost didn’t get to have a really, really joyful experience afterwards, partly because I was looking in the wrong place for it.

But I celebrated a bit that night, I drank, I sang, I stubbornly decided to make something of the moment and I vibed. I connected, chatted, was a bit horny and a bit reckless. Then I successfully nursed a hangover, re-read my story and actually managed to experience it almost like a reader, and I felt a happiness that echoed that answer I’m so sure of so purely:

This is what I’m alive for. Art.

And I want to remember that. The echo, and the joy. So I’m writing it down because while it might feel redundant to do so right now (and it does), I know that once enough time has passed, it very much will not have been.

#préparation #writing endeavours