Space…the final frontier.
These are the voyages of the Starship Enterprise,
its five-year mission
….to explore strange new worlds
…to seek out new life and new civilizations
…to boldly go where no man has gone before.
Recognize those words? Yep. The mission statement intoned by Captain James T. Kirk (William Shatner) in the old Star Trek series created by Gene Roddenberry.
Space: the final frontier. These are the voyages of the starship Enterprise. Her ongoing mission: to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life-forms and new civilizations; to boldly go where no one has gone… before.
Thank you, Wikipedia!
But right now, I’m thinking of another space: white space. The blank canvas of a piece of paper or the screen on a word processing program—the place “to boldly go where no one has gone . . . before.”
Space—a place to realize dreams or regurgitate nightmares; to produce something fresh from the landscape of your imagination; to “seek out new life-forms and new civilizations.” In other words, to be as original as you can.
Filling that space can be as daunting as the start of a five-year mission exploring the galaxy. Speak for yourself, you’re probably thinking. I have no trouble filling the white space. Okay. . . . Filling that space can be as daunting for me as the start of a five-year mission exploring the galaxy. Happy now?
The words to boldly go are a clarion call for me. Yet I’ve never been known for boldness. Senior year of high school, I stood by my locker grinning like a stalker as a guy I liked passed. Couldn’t work up the nerve to say anything, other than whisper to my friends, “There he is!” (as if they couldn’t see him). Repeat that a thousand times during college. Nothing’s changed by the way. But some of that timidity has crept into my writing these days. I freeze up, even in a discovery draft.
To boldly go . . .
Yeah, yeah. I know all that stuff about writing being akin to exercising a muscle. If I don’t do it regularly (and this week, I’ve been lax), my writing muscle becomes flaccid. Well, welcome to the flab, baby! Not a pretty sight.
To boldly go . . .
Okay. I hear you, James T. Kirk/Gene Roddenberry. I also think of another word often used in Star Trek for an entirely different reason: Energize. A command given when the transporter was about to beam someone to a different place. To boldly go, I need to be energized. I can’t help thinking of a great post Andra Watkins wrote, “How Do You Fill Your Creative Tank?” which reminded me that my tank is low. I’ve been running on fumes for a while.
But I’m not content to sit here flabby and empty. I’m off to fill my creative tank so that I can exercise my writing muscle. I’ve got a long space voyage ahead.
Star Trek logo from startrek-wallpapers.com.