I haven’t written a word in five days.
My writing routine has been corona’d.
I have not been furloughed as I expected (and hoped) to be. My work has actually ramped up. I have sat here on this Argos office chair staring at this screen for nine straight hours (with a fifteen minute yoghurt break at midday). I logged off and opened my novel but I just couldn’t face it. I’m wrecked. How is it possible to feel exhausted when you’ve hardly moved?
But today hasn’t been a total write off. Something miraculous happened. An idea that came to me as I was falling asleep last night (always the way) which I was too tired to get out of bed to jot down, came back to me this afternoon. I have it here in front of me in black and white. You’re not going anywhere except into my next chapter you little b'yoot. The number of ideas that have fallen through the cracks of my consciousness never to be seen again is staggering. Whole novels must lie at the bottom of that chasm.
My current word count stands at 35,000, meaning I’m approaching half way. Motivation is high. Passion for my characters is high. But time and energy? Low. I spoke with my mother last night. Told her I was struggling. Told her I was angry. Launched into a diatribe about my neighbours, about my job. She told me to channel my despair into writing. I see this working for a painter. I see him stabbing the brush at his canvas. Angry little blobs of paint. Blob blob blob blob. Maybe that’s how impressionism was invented. But can a writer do this? Writing is too precarious. It’s like surfing. You have to be conscious enough to write coherently, while at the same time dipping into your sub-conscious just enough to make what you write true and meaningful. You can’t just give yourself over to mindless expression. You can’t fall in. But I have to admit, sometimes in the moment between waking up and ‘being’ awake I marvel at the weirdly poetic quality to the train of semi-coherent thoughts passing through my brain. If I could somehow capture that it would be, interesting. Has anyone ever written a book hypnotised? I volunteer to be first! Contact me if you’re a legit hypnotist.
Currently reading: The Darkest Day by Håkan Nesser.
Current thought: god I miss football.