Where have I been? I looked back at my blog, and realized it’s been five days since I’ve posted anything. I must admit at the outset, the impending elimination of my job has hit me harder than I thought it would. I took off Wednesday afternoon, trying to discover where my head had rolled after I, smiling, placed the stupid thing in the federal guillotine. I went to work Thursday, waved to my adoring fans as if I could enjoy nothing so much as appearing at work.
It was all a lie. I didn’t want to be there at all. I choked down the bile and enumerated the ways I could seek revenge on my boss, who had let slip to pretty much everyone in the library that my job had been eliminated. So much for doing this on my own terms, eh? Now I get pitying glances every time someone walks past my cubicle, several times a day, people say “what will you be doing?” (to which I want to glare and say “Drawing unemployment, stupid!” but I’m constrained by the social niceties that dictate office manners). Worst of all is the blow to library morale. Now everybody is wondering if theirs will be the next turkey necks on the Thanksgiving chopping block.
At home, I turned off my phone, my computer and my mind. I crocheted may be 6 hours; due to a game-ending mistake, I had to rip out approximately 4 hours of work. I spent most of Sunday morning playing an online video game and tried not to think about my situation. In the back of my mind was the constant mantra “I should be writing. If I really want to do this, I should write.”
My writing is inextricably linked to my dreams. I slept, and hoped for memorable dreams. Have you ever encountered a task that was so big, you didn’t know where to start? Choosing characters, a plot, a setting, thematic issues. Really, it’s the planning of the novel that keeps me from writing it. You may have noticed that I occasionally post book reviews. I’m a picky reader, but I know when someone’s done a decent job. I think that’s my greatest fear–failing to produce something truly readable. I wake up and hope for inspiration. Since inspiration doesn’t come, I make a pot of coffee. In that five minutes, I’m still not inspired, so I check email. Then Facebook. then check my blog stats… before I know it I’m logging into a silly game, and doing nothing.
Reading a decent story is a dual-edged thing. It’s inspiring, of course, but also amplifies my fear of failing. I have ideas swimming around in my head (see the picture above), but I’m afraid to put them to paper. That’s it. I’m scared. How pathetic is that. A writer, afraid to write?
Work will be over in 60 days. If I buckle down, and do something with my life, I should be able to assemble a novel in that time. This is my goal–to have a work to hawk to publishers by Christmas. I don’t know if I can do it: like I said, some pitiable fear-demon is lurking in the back of my head. I have to conquer it before I can move on.
If you pray, send one my way.