For the past fifteen days the words have been in flood. My pens keep running out of ink and my second notebook is almost full. The images, metaphors and scenes are damming up, coming so fast I can’t keep up.
Today’s plan was this:
1. Write until 12.
2. Sunday lunch at the restaurant a 60 foot journey from our front door.
3. Write until dinner.
You know those writing sessions when from the first sentence it’s obvious the words are not going to behave. They won’t say what they mean. They make the sentences chunky and flat, with as much rhythm as new born puppy.
The more I wrote today the worse it got. Oh, there were words. My usual method is to start writing and keep the pen going. I write my way into things. This morning I filled the pages with the most banal lifeless writing it was possible to produce. Not once did I click over into that phase where the writing takes over and you disappear into it.
So what did I do?
I did what all writers do. I wondered what the hell I was doing here pretending to be a writer? Who was I kidding? If I wanted evidence of how bad I was I just had to look at this crap.
Then I remembered reading an interview with Helen Garner. She had those times when she felt like a fake, when all she wanted to do was curl up in bed with her shame. When that happened she stopped writing, went to a movie, did something that got her away from it.
So I made a cup of coffee and ate an almond navette. Then I went to lunch. I had two courses – seafood salad and a 7-hour roasted lamb shank, if you’re interested – and half a bottle of red wine that came from the vines at the bottom of the hill.
Afterwards I had a two hour afternoon nap and then I watched Australia thrash Argentina in the Rugby World Cup. The Wallabies did a great day’s work.
I’m just having a great day!