It is 9:30 and it is finally quiet in chez Biff. This means one thing, and one thing only. I can finally attempt to craft a blog post.
I sometimes fancy myself a skilled craftsman of words. I picture myself working diligently and delicately, paying great attention to detail. The words I craft are intricate and daedal, requiring high levels of skill and patience and dedication.
However, it would be more accurate to say that I am more of a blacksmith, hammering loudly and barbarously on my word shaping anvil. “Mongo write words!” I yell over and over as I pound brutishly on the keyboard of my laptop with my fists.
The process of writing is not nearly so sophisticated and refined as I once dreamed it would be. In my youth I dreamed of sitting at my roll-top desk, wearing my smoking jacket, sipping brandy, and tapping away at my archaic, but quaint old typewriter. I was able to write uninterrupted except for the frequent calls from my publisher, breathlessly asking me if my latest book was finished.
But instead I am typically wearing pajamas, sitting crosslegged in my favorite chair, with my laptop balanced precariously in my lap, wearing headphones to try to drown out the uninspiring din of everyday life around me. Gone is the brandy, replaced with coffee (often cold). Gone is the rapid-fire clackety-clack of the keyboard, replaced with the unproductive chin-stroking and hmm’ing and staring at the ceiling as if it will somehow inspire me. But my ceiling is not the Sistine Chapel and it does not inspire me.
It makes me wonder why we writers do this to ourselves. I mean, it’s not like a physical art. It’s not like glass-blowing or sewing or model building or woodworking or any of those things that, when you’re done, you can hand it to someone and say, “I made this for you.” With writing, it’s all so ethereal. Even if you print it out and hand it to someone and say, “I wrote this,” it is akin to handing them a vial and saying, “Here are some ebola cultures.” They’re liable to drop it and run away as fast as possible, never to be seen again.
Well, I don’t know why we do it … and keep on doing it. That is a complete mystery to me.
But one thing is for certain … I’ll be back here tomorrow to try it again.