I’m in bed in this cabin on a friend of mine’s property.
She’s sometimes more serious about my writing than I am — and that’s a good thing. Not that I’m not serious. It’s just the parts of my book I have left to write are the most emotionally intense ones and it’s hard to consciously make yourself go there. It’s like forcing your eyes open without blinking and letting the eye doc squirt iodine in. It’s like piercing your own skin because you need a few drops of blood. I don’t think people who say asshole things like— ‘well you just need to finish those last bits and you’re done’ understand.
My ex-father in law once remarked that he thought it took me too long to write because he was reading about one of his favorite Costco bin authors and how they just churn things out. “Maybe you are paying too much attention to the kind of words you are using and should just finish.” My stepmother sometimes says hurtful things about me not being ‘a real writer’ which I take to mean I have no savings account and I borrow her car too much.
I want to tell him right now that I’d give anything to be able to write a shitty supermarket check out stand novel. I’d give anything not to stare at a paragraph for an hour and wonder at getting the precise emotional state rendered in words. I’d give anything to be able to write a romance or a mystery and use phrases like ‘he cupped her breast’ or have my work read like a CSI episode. You think literary writers wanted to be born this way? With conscious awareness that their words are outside the mainstream which in turn means so is the cash?
It’s not a lifestyle choice. I was born this way.
So yeah. I’m not leaving this cabin today. I’m gonna revise my play script. I’m gonna work on this poetry manuscript and then I’m going back to those three chapters sometime in the wee hours of the morning that hurt so much to write. Because I don’t know any other way.
And I’m the luckiest girl in the world because my buddy Michelle has lent me her cabin. And her wife made me coffee this morning. And there’s a husband at home with the kids believing in me. And while my kids might be annoyed sometimes, they know that this alone time thing isn’t a bad thing. And that it yields more than they imagine. And that they too can claim this space if they so choose.
Or maybe they won’t choose because they are born this way too.
Also? I have the complete body of work of Kate Bush playing in the background. 🙂