Thursday, January 14, 2010

the last pages

I realize I've been a little disordered lately. I forgot to add one thing to last week's posts: I hate writing, too.

There are lots of consequences involved in writing. You have to be isolated, not just from people, but pretty much from the rest of the world. I don't care what you say, writing really is not "fun."

"Fun" is like going to the beach.

Then there's this three in the morning thing. What's that about?

If you're determined to be a writer, you may very well end up like me: wandering around for days in a kind of "black hole" state of consciousness. This is where I've been for about five days now. I keep writing and rewriting the same pages over and over, and they're the last pages of my newest book.

The last pages.

And I'm kind of disappointed at what one of the characters does to himself, even though I knew it was going to happen when the book first came into my head. I've written a number of rather lengthy novels at this point, and I'm still not sure where they came from. They just show up by themselves and I put the words down. And, for the moralists out there, I am not excusing any transgressions by claiming "the stories write themselves," as a means to insulate myself from criticism that:

1. sometimes bad things happen to good people, and,

2. sometimes good people make weak decisions.

Normally, I take a break between writing books, but this time I haven't. I've cranked out two completely unrelated books without letting myself "unwrite" for a while. I didn't really have a choice (but I am not under the pressure of any external deadlines, either), and this is one of the things that makes writing not fun.

And, man, I know I'm hard to live with when I do this, so I have to hand it to my wife, kids, and friends, because writing tends to spread its un-fun-ness like a bad smell out on the general population.