The writing day begins at last. I feel such a joyful unleashing of bounds as I escape work and home life and zip out to The Beanery. I'm free! I'm going to write! Woo hoo!
Exclamation points are well deserved.
I'll admit, I was low and tired last night as I wrote. It was one of those times when I felt I had the anti-Midas touch. Give me golden words and ideas and I'll transform it into leaden prose for you. Damn and damnation. It frustrated the dickens out of me.
So I awoke a bit despondent today. Had meetings from 6:30 to 11:30 scheduled. Bleah. A day on the phone. I'd made substantial strides on a project yesterday and was eager to continue it but I was going to be on the phone instead. Bleah.
I drifted through emails as I listened to conversations, sometimes interjecting points or asking questions. Then, on break, I caught Jon Stewart interviewing J.K. Rowlings on The Daily Show. It was pleasant, not anything deep. Jon congratulated Rowlings on her success, writing "The Casual Vacancy," after writing the Potter series. He said that's hard for people like writers and musicians to follow up such a great success with something else. He thought it took a great deal of courage.
Rowlings turned it back on him, though. She said it had taken more courage to write the Potter series, reminding him that she had nothing when she started writing the Potter series and had nothing but a belief in herself as she took seven years and wrote it, and then became an overnight sensation.
Boom, there it was, another uplifting moment. "Why, she can do it," the Writer said. "So can I."
Then a co-worker pinged me via Sametime chat. Sametime chat tends to be used for urgent needs among most of us. People will often ping you via chat and ask, "Can we talk?" My chat has been busy the last three weeks, an interrupting nuisance. So, oh, boy, now what? I thought when it rang. Who is bugging me and what has gone wrong? But it was a co-worker, writing to tell me they thought an email I wrote 'on the customs debacle' was a masterpiece. Was he being facetious? "Why is that?" I typed back. Well laid out, nuanced, intelligent and logical, he wrote back, really refined insights into a complex situation.
"Well, thank you," I replied. I was mystified, though. Was it really that good? I went back and found the email and re-read it. Yes, it was a good email, except for like three typos that leaped out at me - arrgh! - but I thought he was being magnanimous.
I'll take it, though. I'm a fragile ecosystem of confidence and self-doubt. His feedback wsa a good reminder of how many of us are so fragile, and the impact such simple kindness can have. It was very generous of him to take the time to think that and to pass along that compliment. Now I need to pay it forward.
Work is paused for the moment. Pushed for time, I drove down here to coffee shop - my writing social group meets tonight but our time was moved forward so we can watch the debates - but I'm down at The Beanery, free to write, hands and mind at the writing ready.
Time to write like crazy once again.
Causes Michael Seidel Supports
Kiva, Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, Propublica.org, Doctors Without Borders, GreaterGood.com