Do you believe in lucky talismans?
I have tried. I have done certain things or collected certain things because they felt lucky, or the idea of them pleased me and felt lucky. These are almost always around my writing. Collecting feathers when I first started screenwriting, for example. Every time I found a new feather, it felt significant. My friend and I taking our usual two-mile walk and having a bluejay feather literally drift to the ground in front of us. An owl feather, fluffy and beautiful, on the ground by the car when I got out to look at the Rio Grande Gorge in New Mexico. A hawk feather on a desk, and being told by the man who owned that desk, “It’s illegal to own that. If it disappears from my desk and I don’t know what happened to it, I’m fine with that, though.” I mean, it seemed the universe was flinging feathers at me, so, this had to be lucky, right?
However, it was years before I won the Nicholl Fellowship, before the “lucky” things happened, and by then my feathers were dust-collectors that I hadn’t looked at or thought of in, well, years. Very difficult to connect the dots there.
So, the thing about luck is, it’s fun for me to “play” with, but it doesn’t really seem to mean anything. The idea of it is magical. The reality? Not so much.
As I continue to ruthlessly mine layers of my office and get rid of Stuff and box books to haul away, I have run across a few remnants of luck. Some of it I am keeping because I just happen to like it. I can’t recall why this little brass swan on my desk (a paperclip holder) was supposed to be lucky to me, but now it’s just a pretty thing on my desk and I like it.
The luck thing doesn’t seem to have helped me much, other than the adage that to be lucky, you have to do the work first, and I’ve done a hella lot of luck in my writing life to get lucky, and mostly, it seems the work is more important than the luck.
Do you believe in luck? Do you collect talismans? Is luck real or just fun?
What do you collect because it makes you feel lucky?
[also should I paint my office or just rearrange it, and if I paint it, dare I use the darker green I love or play it safe with the lighter green that will be darker on the wall? if I paint I will be using green (chemical-odor-free) and green (color) paint, btw]