Sunday, January 11, 2009
I'd Like To Buy The World A Coke
Gloria Steinem once said that she didn't like to write, that she liked to have written. I understand this all too well as writing is mostly staring into space, trying to figure out what the organic fucking structure of something is until you want to tear every last hair out and then some. Worse, the better you're writing, the worse you feel. When I'm not writing, I'm a terrific writer, and I know everything about the process and would love to tell the world, like the commercial about buying the world a Coke so they could sing in perfect harmony. If you ask me, I don't think there has been one better than that for Coke since, especially when they tried to pawn that ass nasty New Coke onto an unsuspecting public with Bill Cosby telling us how great it is. But when I am writing, I know almost nothing about what I'm doing except that I'm not doing anything else well. The laundry builds up, phone calls go unanswered, and my hair hasn't been touched by a styling product in many days.
Many writers have written about this particular brand of frustration -- waiting, struggling, writing stuff that has to be tossed. It's not physical work so there's bad posture involved, there's poor dietary habits, and a strange tendency to mumble to yourself. But without this pain, there is no good writing. I once knew someone who compared the whole ordeal to a group of monks who used to wear hair shirts and flog themselves with tiny sticks. Which at the time I thought was pretty stupid. Now it seems apt. I'm almost done with Second Day Reported, and I've always contended that the last ten percent of any writing project is the hardest. When I get done, I'm going to buy myself a Coke (a real one, not diet -- I tried the artificial and could never stomach it) and maybe do some laundry provided I can remember how.
Michelle's Spell of the Day
"I've been very lucky, considering what I look like and what I do." James Gandolfini
Drinking writing ritual -- all caffeine, all the time. You can drink when you finish writing!
Benedictions and Maledictions