Yesterday on Twitter, someone wrote to tell me: I find your normality very refreshing : )
The phrase stayed with me. At first I wondered if it was because I’m a Buddhist priest. Maybe priests aren’t meant to be normal, and so it’s a surprise that I was enjoying listening to Jarvis Cocker on the radio?
The more I thought about it, the more I saw this tweet as evidence of success at my mission in life.
The characters in my novels are all deeply flawed. Joe is pretty much in the dark when it comes to forming relationships, especially with girls. Ruth‘s flaws are so deep, she doesn’t know if she’s even going to make it.
The characters in my novels are also deeply loved – by me, their creator, as I write about them. And when the books are written. I was flicking through the new version of The Letters last week and it made me cry three times.
Sometimes it is a struggle to love my characters. And sometimes it is a stretch for us to love each other, and parts of ourselves. Our cracks go deep, and if someone prods us in just the right (wrong) place they can see our raw pink insides. This is when we’re mean to each other, because we’re frightened and we are trying to protect ourselves from something unimaginably awful. We also get prodded and prickled by the world, and it makes us eat too much cake or feel murderously jealous or delight in the misfortunes of others.
Tomorrow I am re-launching my career as an author with my new name. I feel a little bit terrified. Will anyone buy my books? I feel audacious. Why would anyone buy my books? I feel hard-done-by. Why haven’t millions of people already bought my books? I am also excited, and humbled by the support I already receive from all of you, and deeply happy to be refreshingly normal. Deep bow.
I think the cracks in the sky accompanying this piece are rather beautiful. Don’t you? Share one or two of your cracks in the comments below. Let’s all be broken together.
Forget your perfect offering.
There is a crack in everything,
That’s how the light gets in.
PS if you’d like to explore your own glorious broken-ness during May you can work with me or Kaspa with three e-courses starting tomorrow – Writing Towards Healing or Mindful Moodling with me, or Journal Your Way Home with Kaspa – there are still a few spaces left.
Earth & Sky by Dyrk Wyst