As has been my constant refrain lately, I haven’t much new to report. The only flutter of hope currently knocking around is the fact that in my free moments I’ve struck on a few ideas probably worth working into my next trip into the world of dirty story telling. I’m not going to be giving those few ideas just now, but was nice to see the creative juices are still flowing even if they’re doing so slowly at the moment. It’s been happening so often lately I’ve taken to carrying around two notebooks – one for all the things I’m supposed to be working on during the day and the other for the delightfully pervy ideas that drop into my head at the most inappropriate times. Given the kind of month it’s been it feel good knowing I still have that tool in my kit bag.
Look, if I’m perfectly honest I’ll admit that my day job is currently sucking all the joy (and time) out of my day. I expect that to change sometime after Thanksgiving, but for now it’s just an enormous drag that’s reaching out and absorbing every spare moment of effort. Although I’m still working on outside projects at the margins, my 9-5 is being quite the demanding bitch at the moment. If nothing else, it’s a healthy reminder of how much I need to look at other options (even if that option isn’t giving it all up to chase fame and profit as a writer).
I do take some solace that nearly everyone has moments like these – when the grind of work, eat, sleep, work gets them in its teeth. It’ll pass. It always does. But damn it would be nice if it would move on quickly. It’s really starting to harsh my mellow.
A sore throat isn’t something that should bother a writer. I mean it’s not like we have to use our actual voice for getting words to the page. Sadly, that’s exactly what’s thrown a hitch into all manner of work for the last few days. It’s just naggingly distracting enough to keep me from getting my head into anything that absolutely does’t need to get done. The Gods know I’ve got plenty of ready excuses to avoid sitting at the desk and getting work done, but this one I could have happily missed. Although I don’t see it dragging me to death’s door, it’s damned well thrown a wrench in the works for the last two nights. Whoever it was that told me trying to do everything all at once might just have been on to something.
If I’m honest, I’ll admit that having a real job with “real work” is something that’s getting in the way of this whole “writing thing.” Sure it pays the bills and all, but it seems hell bent on doing it in the most soul crushing way imaginable – almost designed to leave you spent and beaten at the end of each day as if the powers that be don’t want you to have the time or energy to look around and do a little thinking for yourself.
Then again, if we all started thinking for ourselves how many of us would keep showing up every day to our little cubes and doing our part to keep up the corporate hive? Deep down I wonder if that isn’t the greatest fear those “powers” have on a day-to-day basis. If we all woke up on a random Thursday and just decided we didn’t want to do the real work the whole damned universe would probably grind to a halt. Of course that means no one would be showing up to milk the cows, or build the cars, or keep the lights on, so the idea isn’t precisely without its flaws.
I’ve heard whispered rumors of people who are deeply in love with their real work. Maybe those people really do exist somewhere, but from my vantage point everyone just seems to be trudging through the day trying to do as little of that real work as possible – or just enough so they don’t catch three kinds of hell from their boss. Almost reflexively I know there has to be a better way. Unfortunately I haven’t quite put my finger on what that better way is. Don’t worry, though. I’ll keep looking.
With the wind howling through near-bare trees and a decided chill in the air it occurs to me that we’re nearly back in the part of the year that gives me the most free time to get some writing done. Although I’m not looking forward to short days and long, cold nights, I am looking forward to the extra free time I’ll get to spend at the keyboard.
I never realize how much time I lose to tending the lawn, cutting brush, and repairing odds and ends outside until I suddenly find myself not doing those things. It’s very quickly becoming the time of year when attention turns towards what needs done indoors. Fortunately, the indoors here isn’t that big and most of what needs done doesn’t turn into all-day projects. As much as I’ll hate to see the sun setting early tonight and to start finding frost on the car each morning, I’m surprisingly thankful for the changes coming on. Maybe it’s a throwback to our long gone ancestors, but as far as I’m concerned we’re entering the time of year that’s all about hunkering down and keeping the fires stoked. It’s not quite my favorite time of year, but it does have its charms.
Earlier this week, I talked about cheating. I wish I had the foresight to cheat on tonight’s post, because my brain feels like it’s about to start leaking out of my ear at any moment. It’s one of those days that makes it hard to imagine how anyone ever makes a go of it as a writer when they’re employed full time at some other job. Add in a commute, household responsibilities, quality time with family members, and you realize quickly that there’s damn little time left over for the hard work of writing something that other people might want to read. That might be one of the most frustrating parts of doing this as a sideline. At least for me, I never feel like the work is getting all the attention it deserves – and nowhere near as much attention as I want to give it.
There are a literal ton of blogs out there with helpful hints and tricks to carve out more time for writing, but I’m not going to turn this into one of them. I’m sure they’re good advice for some, but I haven’t struck on any big ideas that have proven particularly helpful to me. Maybe one day I’ll stumble across the trick, but just now I feel like I’m falling down on the job.
Not at cards or anything important, but certainly at blogging. Like today’s post, you’re seeing it bright and relatively early on Monday morning. I’m sitting on the couch writing it after Sunday dinner. Without telling you that there’s no reason anyone needs to know. That’s just part of the magic of the internet… we can be anyone and anywhere we want to be. We can do it more or less anonymously. We can give voice to whatever wild idea happens to pop into our collective heads. As long as you don’t take any of it too seriously, the internet is a fascinating and wonderful place.
Unless I have a trip coming up or some other planned absence from the keyboard, I try not to “cheat” the blog too much. Usually I get Monday’s post written on Sunday evening if for no other reason than it tends to be less chaotic than Monday. It’s the last chance to sit down and take a deep breath before diving back into the week and being a “respected professional.” That gives me most of the week to kick around Thursday’s post. It’s a rhythm that works well enough that I haven’t tried to wreck it by adding a 3rd post every week or, God forbid, trying to master new topics every day of the week like some bloggers seem to manage. How they do that, I have no idea.
Much as I’d like to say I have an update on what I’m working on, the best I can say is it’s a paying job so it’s getting the attention it deserves and my own ambitions continue to be held in abeyance. That’s not feeling like a bad thing at the moment. It’s nice to get out in the rest of the world and break character a bit, don’t you think?