It’s been almost two weeks since I sat in this chair, in front of this keyboard and wrote something. So much for my “write every day discipline”! I suppose I can use the excuse of having had surgery, but is that really a valid excuse? All those Ten Tips For Writers things that other writers put on their websites tell you to write every day no matter what. So I think being blitzed out of my mind on pain and the drugs meant to chase the pain away is probably not a good reason. After all, it is only a What, and they tell you that the Whats shouldn’t matter.
Of course, I haven’t been able to write fiction since early summer, and when I mentioned that on Facebook other fiction writers assured me that they’ve had similar maladies from time to time and I’m not alone.
You’d think now that I’ve got vats of narcotics I’d write something great. Wouldn’t it be awesome if I could turn into a sort of Hemingway person and write big long interesting books and turn my neighbourhood into a home for mutant pussies? I can just see people touring Hallcrest Court decades beyond my deceasement, marveling at my workspace and making up fussy docent pronouncements about my life. (‘She had the walls painted purple and grey, the colours of madness and dullness’; ‘we think that hymn is meant to be ironic’; ‘In this drawer she kept a collection of cheap toys from fast food children’s meals as a statement about consumerism’)
Well, as you can probably tell, there is not yet greatness to be written. In fact I just spent three minutes fiddling with one of the toys on my desk. It’s a stuffed wolf that my husband bought me at Wolf Trap when we went with his sister and her husband and their daughter to see Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers screened in the background while a live orchestra played the film’s score. My husband’s sister and niece are music people, and their whole family is way off into the LOTR films. I was just thinking about how my brother in law shot himself in the head a few months ago and then I got to wondering whether or not time travel is a good thing. What if you could pick up an item and go just once back in time to the point when you bought that item to deliver a message? Would I go back to Wolf Trap four summers ago and say “Hey, three and a half years from now, don’t give in to the dark, okay?” Or would I say “get a shingles innoculation. Trust me.” How do you know which piece of advice to give? This is why I am uncomfortable with time travel stories…we’re all so woven in this tight net. Time travel is all about pulling loose one string, which can never be done without marring the fabric. The man he was all those other summers ago would just sort of look at me like I’d lost my own mind. I know that look. I get it a lot. If I were to travel across time it’d be the biggest waste of Suspending The Laws Of Physics. Besides which, I like who and what I am now for the most part. It’s not a fancy life and I haven’t collected any mutant pets, but neither am I collecting and discarding spouses or losing time to drunkenness. And people don’t listen to me now, in the normal flow of time, so why would they take me seriously wrapped in the cracked burrito of a time voyage? “Hi, I know you think I’m the family nutbread already, but I’m seriously here on a journey through time with a message.”
This is 134 words longer than it should be. And it’s not like there are 134 essential words I can’t cut. I just don’t want to. But I do need to end this missthepointive (we’re at 167 over now). I don’t have a suitable conclusion. I can’t think of one. I’ll just say bye, for now.