I can't help but shake my head back and forth...
Disbelief, amazement, humility, joy, sorrow... No? You aren't getting those emotions. Say it one more time, even slower. "Yesterday."
I visit my yesterdays pretty often. I reckon that most writers do--even more than people who don't write. We are a lot that is given toward reflection.
It doesn't matter what we write--historical fiction, memoirs, contemporary fiction, romance, scifi, fantasy...and so on, even when it appears that we are looking forward, we are looking behind us. We are sifting through our yesterdays, to find the bits of a memory that will inspire the words.
Everything we write comes from the past. From something we have seen, experienced, felt, tasted, touched, loved, hated, admired or loathed.
So, we set down to write our stories. The characters have been introduced--from fragments of people we have known, the world in which they live has been built--from fragments of places we have seen in real life-- or other fictional places, and then the event happens. Now, our characters must react.
We imagine them, see their faces, and hear their words being uttered as we type them onto the screen. And every word...every one of them, comes from our own pasts.
Our own morals, ethics, affections, likes, dislikes, tolerance, intolerance, preferences--positive and negative, come alive on the pages. And even characters composed of fragments that don't resemble us in any way--perhaps pulled from front page headlines, grisly news stories, the playground bully, or even an old teacher with a cruel streak, are subject to us (the writers) projecting ourselves onto them, even if we aren't cognizant of it as it happens. We temper everything with a good helping of the person we are--shaped by all of the yesterdays of our lives.
While we write, we dig through our minds, our memories, baring long forgotten tidbits of treasures. And that is what gives us our unique voices. No two are alike...just like no two yesterdays are alike.
Can you see your yesterdays in the words you write today?