Quote: “Of course I can write anywhere, I’m a writer.”
I would like to say that as a writer I can hone in on my writerly genius (Ahem) and spin gold at any time. But honestly it’s a real exercise of determination to sit and write for a continual length of time. I put it on a par with training for the marathon or Bikram yoga. I say this because I have participated in both and during these (feats of endurance) activities my mind was battling with my body, trying to convince it that there is something else that I must be doing. In the marathon my body was screaming, you have done enough training, stop now, what if you injure yourself, stop. All lies from my own head. In Bikram my mind is shouting, help you’re suffocating in an old sports sock, you’re going to pass out in this heat, sweating this much is not normal, maybe you’re coming down with something. Writing is similar, no matter how much I love it, need or even want to do it; my tricky, ever so creative little mind tries to distract me.
Most of my writing, creative writing, is done in cafés where the environment is not my own so I can switch off and people can bring me things. Not that I want a slave, it just saves me removing myself from my computer or pen. I tend to edit and re write at home. Sounds strange that a busy café may be more productive, but most writers will probably understand where I am coming from and how much being at home can be the biggest distraction of all. It takes a lot of will power to write at home, so congratulations to those who manage it. Cleaning the bathroom becomes something strangely attractive: something that I have to do and I can’t believe that I have left it so long, it must be done now or I will never be able to concentrate. I settle back down to writing with the basin sparking but what’s that I hear?
“How can you relax? Look at that speck of dust on the carpet. You must vacuum immediately.”
What’s that? My conscience? Surely not. I shake my head with derision in a Sheldon manner. I try and ignore it and I look at my computer but before I know it my hands are wrapped around the nozzle and I have stripped back the sofa and taken down the curtains to do the best job, a job worth doing and all that. It won’t take long then I can concentrate on my writing.
All better, I sit back and sigh, a sigh of relief because now I can relax. But what’s that? My mouth is a little dry. Of course, I have been working hard and I must replenish my fluid intake immediately. It will only take five minutes max.
Settled with tea I begin. Like Mozart I strike away at the keys with only a flourish that comes with genius. Yes, I’m on a roll. But wait, what’s that sensation, ignore it, it will go. Tap, tap. tap, oh for goodness sake I say, or something similar. I stop wriggling in my seat, uncross my legs and make my way to the pristine bathroom, relieved now I return to write. I have to re-read to get back into the flow (so to speak).
Whatever it is: food, having a bladder like that of a heavily pregnant woman or a pigeon flying past the window there will always be something to distract me. Inspiration is ebbing away; I decide today has been a rite off anyway so I may as well finish chores and start afresh tomorrow.
Good luck queen of procrastination.