I Told Myself I Would Write Today

I did. But then again, I tell myself that almost every day.

I lie to myself a lot.

But I said to myself “Self, you should at least try. It’s something you haven’t done in a while.”

So here I am, at the keyboard, writing gibberish about talking to myself because I can’t for the life of me come up with anything else to write. I know I should write. I know part of me wants to write, even if it is drowning in the depths of depression and is frequently bludgeoned to sleep by the part of me that just wants to nap all day and catch twelve hours every night.

But I can’t think of anything to write. I looked through the story drawer, and all I saw in there were sad, dead things, a handful of them still struggling to breathe but knowing it was a futile effort. Amongst the dust bunnies and black mold, they had all withered and died, or had clung to life support in a futile hope they could be saved one day, until the drawer was nothing but a hospice or a funeral home.

Sad indeed. But none of them had grabbed me for long enough, none of them could keep me chained to the keyboard long enough, to be saved. I don’t know if it’s cruelty or mercy, but let them die. Maybe it’s time for something new, something that wasn’t conceived in a different time or place, in a different frame of mind.

I feel like Paul Sheldon when he discusses the need to “have an idea.” Misery is a great book for writing metaphors, especially for those of us who are broken physically and mentally and are trying to use writing as an escape hatch. That’s no surprise; it’s where King was when he wrote the book, after all. Perhaps I need to give it another read-through.

The only thing that comes to mind when I sit on my rump, hand against my temple, saying “Think, think, think” like some kind of crippled and creepy Winnie the Pooh is the line: “There’s a monster in my closet.” Spoken not in the voice of a child, as one might expect, but a middle aged man who’s seen more miles than he should have.

There might be something there. Maybe. But I don’t know what, or how to go about it. Writing is a muscle, and if you don’t do it for long enough – like, a year or more – it starts to rot away, and I barely know how to exercise it at this late date.

But I have to try.

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