NoBloPoMo 10: Secret Worlds

by Acacia

Everybody has a secret world inside of them. I mean everybody. All of the people in the whole world, I mean everybody — no matter how dull and boring they are on the outside. Inside them they’ve all got unimaginable, magnificent, wonderful, stupid, amazing worlds… Not just one world. Hundreds of them. Thousands, maybe.  – Neil Gaiman

I love the idea that somewhere, within my mundane life, I have inside me a secret world. Somewhere from which I could create stories, without the malignant shame of my childhood tainting my vision and infecting it with guilt, depression and anxiety. My problem is that I do contain worlds within me. Other people’s worlds. From artists’ biographies, to plots from stories and novels I’ve read, films I’ve seen, my imagination is filled with the works of others.

Being an art historian, my job is exploring those worlds and introducing them to my students. I love doing that and am profoundly grateful to have that as my career. Still, there is something to be said for making something of one’s own.

There’s also something about realizing that everyone has these worlds. That everyone has a world hidden inside them. I want to find mine. I imagine my mind as a series of doorways, with well-trodden paths between work and home and the door marked “Dark Stuff to Tell Shrink.” There is also a cancer door that I’m currently avoiding. Outside of that path is an overgrown garden, and a hidden door. I think that is where my worlds are, and with no white rabbit to chase and help me to find it.

I’m going to look for it. Write stories that suck and are derivative of everything I’ve encountered and maybe I’ll eventually find the door.