It’s the morning after Super Bowl Sunday, and the New England Patriots are riding high after winning their fifth set of rings... despite the vast majority of the U.S. hoping they’d end up with mud on their faces.
If you didn’t know, they’re the most hated team in the NFL.
Being a Steelers fan who lived in the Baltimore area for nine years, I can’t say the Pats are my least favorite group alive, but they’re still pretty low on my list. So normally, I’d be disappointed in the extreme right now.
However, it just so happened that there was a local Amber Alert issued last night for a two-year-old who looked a bit too much like my adored baby niece. So I went to bed with a very different issue on my mind. And since the little girl was found early this morning, I’m too happy about that to care about much else.
I mean, really, there are just some things that trump football.
But let’s say I was really, really upset about last night’s game. Let’s say I was dejected and despondent, and nothing felt quite right today because of last night.
Well then, on the one hand, too bad. There’s nothing I can do to change the outcome. It is what it is.
Then again, the nice thing about being a creative writer is that I can put the resulting disappointment to good use. That’s what creative writers do. We channel and categorize and calculate our emotions, both good and bad, into making stories stronger.
So if you’re not a Pats fan but you are a writer:
Do you feel all your strength and motivation sapped away to deal with today?
Is your stomach unsettled from more than just the 17 wings you ate at the Super Bowl party and that extra helping of guacamole you knew you should have resisted?
Are you experiencing strong urges to punch a wall? Break a chair? Yell at someone from New England?
That’s all great news! Your characters will doubtlessly experience their own disappointments in your story, and you now can more realistically convey those letdowns!
So make a memo describing your emotional turmoil. Jot it all down in a journal. Then save it for a character’s rainy day.
See? Lemons + Creative Writing = Lemon Meringue Pie.