It’s long, tedious and lonely work. You shut yourself off from the rest of the world for hours, days and months at a time. You have friends pulling at you. You have family pulling at you. You have a dog, a cat, a chipmunk pulling at you. There’s that pretty cloud that looks like a dragon, the tree waving at you, not because the wind is pushing it, but because it wants to say hello, notice me.
Your back is sore; you have a headache; your eyes are so tired you can barely see (the drinking you did with your friends the night before has nothing to do with that, you swear); you have a paper cut on one finger, and it hurts to type; the sound of the air conditioner is bugging you terribly, but you need it to write because without it you would melt in a pool of your own procrastination….
Um. Wait. What did I just say? P-word. Ignore it. It doesn’t apply to you. You have real problems, not like those procrastinorians who use that excuse because it is popular and cliché, the word of the day—hey that rhymes. Maybe I’ve got ADHD…
Ok, no…really. Problems. Bills up the wazoo (and I checked: my wazoo is overstuffed); I’ve got a screaming ankle-biter who swears…well, she just swears, and that’s getting really annoying. I want to know where she got that potty-mouth from…Shit, can’t end a sentence in a preposition or my editor will beat me. Oh crap, I swore. Kid isn’t around, so it really (probably) isn’t from me she gets this stuff. Oh I’m a terrible mom. I can’t write. Terrible people can’t write well, they can only write terribly, so what comes out is something no one will want to read so I just won’t write. Nope, can’t make me. Don’t need to see what more I can fail at—ugh! Damn prepositions!
Writers are different, anyway. They wear these weird clothes and have friends that smell like cats. They have a cigarette dangling from their mouths and a nearly empty glass of scotch making a ring on the sheets of paper that had been their novel first draft they finished—in like 2 hours! They look at the world with a weary, fatalistic eye; have really weird thoughts that, quite frankly, scare me, and I don’t want any part of that staying up all night because their haunting thoughts create an insomnia world I have to live in when I have to get up in the morning and face the boss or the people in the checkout line.
And sex! I want to have time for sex, and sex takes too much time, so, because of that, I can’t write. There. I said it. Horny me, can’t write because I’ve no time to. Damn! I can’t write because of prepositions! They hang on my every sentence like a crack-squirrel who doesn’t realize I just don’t have any coke nuts!
Ok, breathe. I read that somewhere. Breathe and the world…oh crap, what was that? My car? Seriously. On fire?! See. I. Just. Can’t. Write.
Don’t. Don’t look over at the shelf.
I see you, but you aren’t going to make me change my mind. Anyway, you’re dusty. Dusty old manuscript. Unfinished, of course. Like the one beneath it.
They were good stories, though. This one…look at that, the paper is starting to yellow. Wow. Where did time go? I still had…patience. Where did that go?
It is a nice story, though. Really is. Funny thing is, if I had just kept writing day after day, I would’ve finished you. I had the energy then, but…time. I spent it with friends. Ok, fine. Admit that. But they needed me. Some of them. Well, no, we didn’t really do anything. Just hung out. Watched TV. Some good shows. No. Don’t really remember them, but I’m sure…
I’m sure I wasted the time.
Yes. I admit that.
And here you sit.
And the other one.
But…well, they are good stories. Maybe need just a bit more attention to those damn prepositions, but otherwise they really were something I just had to…had to get out.
Have to get out.
Kid’s crying again. Dog’s barking. Car on fire.
Eh. They can wait. The dog’ll lick the kid to sleep, probably clean its diaper too. The fire will burn out eventually. It was parked over at the neighbors, anyway.
Hmmm. It really is a good story. It’s what I needed…need to write. I saw this stuff in my head, and I’ve never seen the like elsewhere.
Ok. Hand crank up the old computer…Let’s see. It all started with…one word.