You see, the moment I start talking to people about a book I'm working on, the book fizzles. I start losing interest. I get writer's block. All sorts of bad writing afflictions happen. The worst sort of distraction for a writing project is ideas for other writing projects. You see, the grass is always greener over the septic tank, to quote Erma Bombeck. The new writing project always seems more exciting and challenging and fun than the old writing project.
Writing is a very isolating sort of endeavor. I may have a great writing day, but I don't have anyone to share the experience with. Yes, I have writer friends. Yes, I can read my work to my wife (who, by the way, is my toughest critic). But, when I write something about which I'm excited, I want instant gratification. I want someone to tell me how great I am. I want someone to tell me I'm the greatest writer since William Faulkner. Instead, I just sit wherever I happen to be writing, and I allow myself to sort of buzz or hum. Feel good about myself. (Until I show whatever I've produced to my wife, who'll say something like, "The ending doesn't quite..." Then I get defensive and pout a lot.)
Therefore, I will not speak of my ideas. I may share a poem or two. I may post a chapter of a novel or memoir. However, I will not divulge all the details until I'm near the end of the writing process.
I'm meeting a good writing friend, Matt, after work today. He says we're meeting for a beer. I'm going to order a Diet Coke. Maybe a gin and tonic if I'm feeling adventurous. At the moment, I'm not feeling very Indiana Jonesish. I may speak to Matt about my new writing project. Or not. It may surprise you to know that, when writers get together, we don't always talk about writing. Sometimes we talk about things like the general stupidity of the Republican Party. Or porn. Or famine and AIDS in Sub-Saharan Africa. You know, normal things.
Saint Marty has a poem to finish now. A writer's work is never done.
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