I am overwhelmed and don’t know why. For the first time, I feel completely submersed in my writing, like I crossed a line and there’s no backing up without popping my tires. I’m not even agented, and yet feel there’s no going back. What’s causing this? My premonitory senses tend to be spot-on, but right now all I can feel is something’s shifted and I can’t stop going. I don’t know what’s going on, but have to proceed with abandon anyway. Something’s going on somewhere. I know this sounds crazy to probably everyone who’s never met me, but I can feel it. I know it. Maybe a beta reader’s getting to the end and is really happy with the ending. Maybe an agent is laughing like crazy over my query. Someone somewhere is thinking about or reading what I’ve written. Perhaps I finally have lost my mind this time. Neither of those scenarios feel quite right.
Years ago I was driving through the Caldecott Tunnel going from the Berkeley side of the Bay Area to Oakland. It’s not a straight tunnel. In the single most terrifying driving incident of my entire life, the lights in the tunnel went out and no one’s headlights were on. It was pitch black. We were all going forward in a curvy tunnel. I was afraid to stop in case I was hit from behind. Believe it or not, your first thought isn’t to calmly turn on the headlights. It’s a whole string of expletives and hoping you aren’t about to become tunnel pancake. Within a second or two that felt like an hour, I reached out and hoped I could find the head light switch in complete darkness. Thankfully I did. Other drivers started doing the same. We kept going forward with no accidents.
Right now I feel like I’m in that place where the lights have gone out. My writing and I are propelling forward into the darkness that is the unknown. All that I know is that I absolutely must keep going and that whatever is going on directly involves me. To stop now is to die.
So into the unknown I go, hoping this irrational feat doesn’t suffocate me.
Interesting typo. I’m leaving it.