Sunday, April 11, 2010

room to write, continued

Lately, I feel like running away to write.

Not long ago, I wrote lovingly about ideal writing locations, those special, idyllic places imbued with certain aesthetics of personal meaning. It goes without saying that even the most perfect writing environment only works if the writer is left alone.

At this point, I'd be thrilled with a Days Inn, a microwave, a coffeemaker, a mini-fridge, and a couple bags of groceries. In other words, never mind inspiration; I now dream of having fewer distractions and obligations in my daily life for the duration of my novel.

Ten days or so might possibly do the trick if I applied myself at a feverish level, but a more realistic time frame would be two or three weeks. This starts to sound more like a cottage somewhere than a motel room. Maybe some place where I could have my cat with me.

Something along those lines starts to sound like a plan... for about thirty seconds. It makes sense until I remind myself how hard my spouse works, and that he depends on my domestic contributions to our household. Add to that the strain of these uncertain economic times, throw in some guilt for having been less supportive when I was younger, and the result is my irrational but strong conviction that writing is an indulgence. Long, luxurious hours of writing are earned only after my duties have been fulfilled.

And yet, sometimes I can barely stand it anymore and just want some time out.

In the meantime, I work on my book in fits and starts. It's definitely not a matter of my being spoiled and wanting everything perfect before I lift my pen. Nor is it a matter of writer's block. I can, and do, write in short spurts if need be, but my best progress occurs when I have more time with fewer interruptions. The last section of the novel is clear in my mind, but I need to be in a quiet place to let it unfold because it seems likely to be the only way I can quiet the responsible voice that gets in my way.

Writing is not like licking stamps and sealing envelopes.
* * *

Things which matter most must never be at the mercy of things which matter least.


Chris McClure aka Panhandle Poet said...

Yes, the distractions. It sounds as though you are much farther along than am I. I am stuck in the middle with the outline clear in my head but I need extended uninterrupted time to proceed. I can't just turn the creativity on and off. It takes time to shed the cares of "what pays the bills" and enter into that private space where the imagination unfolds the "other self" which is the novelist. Thank you for finding me through Donald's blog.

brenda cox giguere said...

Thank you for stopping by and commenting, Chris; you expressed the situation perfectly.

Tough, isn't it. I'm trying to look at the big picture and give my novel the daily time it deserves.

In one sense, mine already has taken time: five years so far, and counting.

Good wishes for timely progress on your project. Stay in touch.