It was almost sunset when I got my coffee.  And the first time I looked up, it was so dark out, it was like I’d been buried alive.  It was 5:30.  What happened?

That afternoon, as it got closer to writing time, my brain got cranky.  This is how it will always be.  No one loves you, and you will always be alone…echoey, empty cave, buried alive alone.  Demons don’t have to be creative.  They yack at you the same junk all the time.  Being creative is our defense.

On the drive from teaching to writing, I started thinking about how dumb it was to continue working on this book.  Like, here I was unable to get an essay published, submission after submission, and I was bothering to write a book?  Not even write, which would be sexy, but rewrite, which is the lamest, dullest work….

Writing a book is a lot more work than I thought it would be.  It’s crazy.  Just getting the rough draft cranked out was moving a mountain.  And I’m on the thirdish draft.  Best not to keep count of them.

I have to say, when I’m reading now, it feels different.  I always thought, I’m a writer.  I could write a book.  Now I’m awed by how hard someone worked.  I can’t believe so many people have bothered to write so many books.

You can’t let your brain be the boss of you.  It really isn’t that smart.

I opened my laptop.  I pushed the round button and it chimed hello.  My finger skated and pushed to make the manuscript show up.  I started reading.

Nope, good story, but not necessary.  Highlight, delete.  Backspace.  Rearrange how that sentence starts.  Highlight, cut.  Scroll.  Paste.  Better.  Mouth the words there.  Clumsy.  Highlight, delete.  Gesture to imagine the gesture.  Click for cursor.  Type, type.

There’s this guy I sometimes run into at coffee.  I hardly know him.  He saw a piece of mine in the paper, and we chatted about it.  Every time I see him, he says, “How’s the writing coming?”  He thinks I am doing something.  He thinks it is admirable or romantic or important or something.   Who knows?  Maybe he’s right.

4 thoughts on “Dark

  1. I know, I know. Keep working. A marble sculpture doesn’t get finished after a few chips here and there. It takes lots of time and effort to transform a hunk of rock into a work of art.

    Now, instead of dispensing encouraging words, I should get back to work on my abandoned manuscript.

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