One might believe that a person who now attempts to squeeze out a living from writing would have something to say. A weekly blog? Who can’t pull that off?
A quick review of the electronic deliveries to the reader makes it evident that these posts come to you about every week and a half. Sometimes not even that.
Like well-known purveyors of snack foods have slowly miniaturized bags of this and that, charging the same, I have allowed the scourge of inflation to impact the frequency of my blog posts.
This is another reason I leave it up to the reader whether or not to join us with kind donations or even friendly advice. It takes the pressure off the mope with the keyboard.
I wake up in the night worrying about what I will write next. I also wake up at night wondering if I deadbolted the front door or left the refrigerator door ajar. And, yes, I get up in the night and check. I am not lazy, just forgetful.
A week ago, I was jolted upright in my bed, horrified that I might have left on the power switch to the tractor’s block heater. The reason? Not the cost of power, nope.
A friend told me last winter that when you make the engine block of the tractor warm, the mice are more inclined to move in and set up shop. “So don’t leave it on too long,” he said.
I’m not too fond of mice. I hate their misdeeds, not their kind eyes.
I work hard to keep my limited reserve of disdain focused on small things, metering it out so it doesn’t taint essential people in my life.
I ran through the house to the empty apartment at the far end, where the switch resides. It was in the off position. The mice would be cold for yet another evening. It was two a.m., but I stayed up reading a book I had put aside for far too long.
I wake up at night worrying about the next book, too.
Anyone who follows my Facebook page or this Newslog (a blog) knows I am working on book number four. In this endeavor, I am taking baby steps. I want to run, but I’ll trip. I know I will.
Writing essays, typically six hundred to one thousand words, comes easy to me. I could quickly write three reasonably coherent articles about random items blindly handed to me by my nonexistent assistant. I don’t know why that is, but I am tuned to make a big deal out of mundane things.
Essays roll off my fingers like a grocery list written by your grammy.
While plugging away on my current fiction project, self-doubt weaves its way between my fingertips. A small voice, probably a brilliant talking mouse, whispers that the book would be done by now if I were writing essays, simply scribbling what is easy for me.
I shake it off by checking the fridge door, drinking water while looking out the window over the sink, and taking the stroll back to the writing chair. I always reach down and scratch the dog’s head while she snoozes in one of several comfortable spots in my living room.
You can get lost in doubtful thoughts. It leads to daydreaming about things that have nothing to do with the task in front of you.
The in-house physical movement, our walks in the woods, and, sometimes, a short drive to grab a coffee I could make at home more efficiently tend to add a breeze to blow away self-doubt.
It also helps to write an essay that has nothing to do with what I should be doing.
Thanks for reading my stuff. The books, the blog, the posts; you all make it worth the effort.