Twenty months have passed since Maile and I came to the conclusion that I should write for a living. Some days I wake up with this almost paralyzing fear that the day will come when our finances will dictate that I cannot do this anymore – other days I’m scared that I might HAVE to do this for the rest of my life.
There have been moments of high praise, when the words I write garner thanks and approval and curtain calls. There have been serious meetings with clients during which I am told the words are not what they were looking for. Not good enough.
Of course to me this means I am not good enough. It is difficult to disentangle my self from the web of my own work.
For the first time in 20 months, blogging feels like a chore, but I just cannot give it up. Will not? I suppose the latter is more likely.
I think I’ve hammered down through the loose dirt and shale, the surface image of what I always thought it was to “be a writer.” What I’ve found is not what I imagined.
This mine I’m digging smells old and dark. It’s more difficult to move around than I thought it would be. The veins hide among the wet rock: mere slivers.
Somewhere in the dark, the realization came to me that I can’t hammer all the time. Occasionally I need to brace myself against the rough walls of this narrow shaft and look up, enjoy the moonlight as it drifts down to where I work.
But I’m doing what I always wanted to do: I wake up, help the kids get breakfast, then sit at my desk and write. I eat lunch with them and then write again. Maile and I get to spend so much time together. Sometimes at night, when the house is quiet and one or the other of them cannot sleep, I sit on the floor beside their bed, working on a novel. I wonder if any of them will remember me like this. My laptop glows, like a new idea.