Broke out of work, out of the house, laughing silently to myself, ha ha ha, free, gathering sunshine with my face. Time for the writing day to begin.
Not quite. This is the walk to the writing day. Mental and emotional preparations, even rituals, must be observed. I'd not thought until today how my walk has phases of disengagement and engagement, taking me from wherever/whomever I was to where the writer waits. I thought I saw him, ahead of me in time and space, sitting at The Beanery. He's bent over the laptop keyboard, coffee to the left, mouse to the right, ghostly and frozen, awaiting my presence.
Phase one of the walk is taking stock of the weather, house, neighborhood, an environmental scan, breathing the air and tasting release. Today, 3:30 PM was just such a perfect time to be out, a day harkening back to youth while posting signs to the future. Rich sunshine paints deep shadows, which let loose dogs of cool air nipping as I pass through them. It's a day of beauty and enjoyment. These were the days when I was young when brash confidence filled me and carried me forward. It's wonderful to feel and recognize it again.
The cats are not about. I worry and wonder about them but decide neither will solve matters now. I'll let them be cats, undisturbed, suspecting that they're curled in safe sunshine somewhere and will re-emerge at my call, if their stomachs don't prod them home first.
I slip from the walk into my city of thought. Work conversations run by on trolley cars. Work thoughts remain active on various project but most are retreating into their buildings, closing their doors and windows. Some sit on a porch, visiting with the day and their own thoughts, which they'll share with me when I need to know. They often work on a need to know basis, passing me the information when it's required. I respect their choices.
Conversations with she who wears the bra in our house roam my city of thoughts' streets. They pass up rememered snatches for deeper thought and review. She's had a busy day, but she's very happy, part afterglow of her book club meeting last night - she was host and she likes being host - working on projects, attending local political debates, visiting with friends. Truth whispers, "I enjoyed the day, where she was out of the house and the cats were elsewhere occupied. Nothing interrupted me and it was like I was at work. So much was accomplished!" Ah, Truth, you can be so cruel and calloused.
The writers in my city creep out from their dwellings. I turn toward the story in progress, a building by itself on the city's edge. It's quieter here, but it's the deep quiet of a pleasant neighborhood. The story almost 4,000 words. I'm uncertain how much more I have to write. The headlights can't reach that far. I want to keep the story below 5,000, I think, believing markets are better for stories of shorter length and then think, why? Let the story find its length. Then I'll revise, edit and polish and see where it stands, and find somewhere that will take its length. So be it.
With that dismissed, I focus more on the ending. I'm still searching for the right ending. Several interviewed for the position but I turned them down as too simple, obvious or trite. Outside my city of thoughts is the field of writing, wide open, sloped and flowered. I walk along, peering for the short story's ending, looking under rocks, changing paths as noises call my attention.
I've arrived at the coffee shop. The writer acknowledges my arrival with just a glance. My Mexican mocha is ordered, bought, delivered to the table. The writer is waiting for me, anxious to begin, patient and controlled, but I must purge the thoughts that walking wrought, put them into the blog, freeing me from their shackles.
Now the writer is ready. "Let's write like crazy," he whispers in my ear.
I nod to myself. The coffee shop is fading, the music sinking as I settle back into my story.
Let the craziness begin.
Causes Michael Seidel Supports
Kiva, Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, Propublica.org, Doctors Without Borders, GreaterGood.com