I looked at the calendar today and wondered where the past month had gone. It had literally passed me by, and without warning, I realized January was winding down. I convinced myself at first that I had nothing to write these past weeks. Then convinced myself that no one would care anyway. Whether there is truth in either of those statements, it was time to end the hiatus from the computer.
Stepping into my office felt strange. I crossed the threshold and felt my blood pressure rise. I swiped an inch of cat hair off my chair. I finally sat down and pressed the on button. I checked back to my progress with novel submissions. None. I checked the last date on my blog site. Before Christmas. I sat and stared out the window, went to the kitchen for soda and a snack, and returned to once again face a blank gray screen.
Writers are funny creatures. We can block out the world for weeks, causing our friends and family to resent our lack of social contact. Internally we scream, “leave me alone” when the phone rings. We isolate, go internal and create worlds we hope some one will someday want to read. And then… The switch goes off and we have no time to leave our lives to venture into our office, go inside our heads, create anything at all.
But we cannot stay away from it forever. Eventually a muse whispers, an idea calls, our guilt becomes too much to bear and we return to the eternal blank page to fill it. Christmas was simple and wonderful as always, due to my adult children who were kind enough to give up Christmas Eve to take me for cataract surgery and stay with me over night. It was easy to pretend I couldn’t see well enough to prepare Christmas dinner or do much of the cleanup either. I highly recommend it.
In the past weeks I’ve had difficult news from friends with health issues, including the big C. I’ve busied myself with projects around the house, re-planted part of my garden and harvested the rest. I’ve shopped the sales and bought virtually nothing. I’ve seen a few movies and gone to a Broadway show and toured the new Mormon Temple in Gilbert. I’ve been quite busy. Way too busy to write.
But today I completed two submissions for my novel, pulled out a short story to revise, and tried to write a blog, which unfortunately turned into this. (hey, anything is better than nothing, right?) I’ll do better, I promise myself. I will find that muse and wring her neck if she doesn’t appear very soon. In the meantime, if any one reads this boring missive, Happy New Year and may 2014 bring health, hope and love.