Saturday, November 19, 2011

A Bad Day for Writing

I am so close to finishing this book. But then sometimes I feel like I am so far from finishing this book.

It’s very early Saturday morning, and I’m getting ready to go to bed. I had a rather unsuccessful writing day today, Friday. Not that I didn’t try. I sat in front of my computer and did my duty with gritted teeth. I typed a lot of words, most of which I’ll either have to take out later or move to a different scene. But I did it, by damn, and I’m hoping I dug out a lot of slag that has a piece or two of gold in it that I can use later.

When I’m on a roll, I can produce several usable pages in a day, but today, there were only one or two paragraphs that I feel confident about.

I never know why one day is better than another when it comes to writing. Why was today so unsatisfactory? Was it because of the inauspicious numerology of the date? More likely it's the stars. Perhaps Mercury is retrograde, which is very bad for communications.

Which may be why my website was gone for most of the past week. Not just down. Gone. Lock, stock, and barrel. My webmaster, who also happens to be my brother, told me that the ISP was down, followed by a few choice words on his part since not only my site was lost but several sites that he manages and there was precious little he could do about it.

My poor little website has taken its knocks in the six years it’s been up. I think it is about time for a major overhaul. However, this is a fairly extensive undertaking and I think it will take some time to plan and execute. Perhaps after the holidays, or after the new Alafair book is finally submitted and in the publication queue. We shall see.

Not only did my website disappear but my WiFi went down and no amount of rebooting would help. I blame Cox. Fortunately the WiFi and the website both reappeared at the same time as mysteriously as they disappeared. It’s hard to tend to business when cyberspace is trying to thwart you at every turn. I had 488 email messages when I came back up.

Perhaps the bad writing day can be blamed on my sensitive nature. I spent fifteen minutes deleting spam off of my reappeared web site, and I cannot believe the number of solicitations to view porn. I wanted to lie upon the couch and press the back of my hand to my forehead until I regained my equilibrium. Just the titles of the sites gave me the vapors.

Maybe it’s because of Louise Penny. I just finished re-reading her novel Still Life, and my head is full of her beautiful thoughts and turns of phrase, like the one below, and at the moment I can’t come up with any of my own.

"When does a cucumber become a pickle?" ... At what point does change happen?

Yes, it must be Louise Penny’s fault, or the weather, or the stars. It certainly can't be my fault, because I did everything required of me, and yet I couldn't produce anything brilliant, or excellent, or particularly adequate.

Coincidentally, a friend and I were just discussing bad writing days recently. Write, write, write, I said, whether you’re doing well or not, because the gods love the effort and will eventually intervene, and it’ll make a believer out of you. Oh, how often my faith is tested.

But what else can one to do? Tomorrow morning I’ll get up, invoke the gods and pray for intervention, sit myself down at the computer, and write.

8 comments:

Aline Templeton said...

Thanks for this, Donis. We all get those days and I believe in 'write, write, write, as well. Hope tomorrow the stars are more favourable!

H. L. Banks said...

As I read your post, I couldn't believe the coincidence for yesterday I had the same writing experience. I am in what I hope to be the final edit/polish but the whole process seems unending. Took a lot of comfort from your distress - sorry -life's like that sometimes.

H. L. Banks said...

As I read your post, I couldn't believe the coincidence for yesterday I had the same writing experience. I am in what I hope to be the final edit/polish but the whole process seems unending. Took a lot of comfort from your distress - sorry -life's like that sometimes. Thanks!

Irene Bennett Brown said...

You are an exceptionally good writer, Donis. The good days will return in a flood, never fear.

Donis Casey said...

Thanks, all. I doubt if there is any writer in the world who hasn't had the same experience. Unless he's delusional.

Rick Blechta said...

“Unless he's delusional.”

I resemble that statement!

Hannah Dennison said...

This is wonderful Donis. I don't feel so alone - you made me laugh .... and I'm sure you will find many nuggets of gold. You always do.

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