Columns 2006

The fine art of writing…from Alaska Women Speak Spring 2006

Here’s the thing about writing.  Given the chance, I can be distracted by something as simple as a dust mote falling.  That’s all I need to know that I should clean the house before I can continue my assignment so that my allergies don’t flare up while I’m working.  And if my creativity is not exactly flowing easily by then, that dust mote could also mean that I need to clean my garage, my yard, my neighborhood and my city.  But honestly, I eventually will get back to the task at hand…whatever that might have been.

Anyhow, as I was sayi…oh wait. That ding means my coffee is finished. I’ll be right back.

Wow, who’d have thought getting the coffee would take so long. But I’d never really looked into the carafe in a while and so was unaware of how stained it had gotten. Had to get on top of that before someone else looked inside of it.

So as I was saying, writing is…oh dear, that signal means some e-mail has come in. I’d better check to make sure it’s nothing important. After all, that offer to make a zillion dollars for merely banking some money for that nice African gentleman can be snatched up by someone else in an instant if I’m not on top of it.

Sorry that took so long. But just as I was finishing my reply to the very special Viagra offer, my IM showed up with a question from my sister. And to be honest, I couldn’t remember what hour exactly my mom was born so that Judy could find out some important horoscope thing.  That meant I had to search through all the family papers I’ve, by default, become the archivist for.  And I do mean to archive them as soon as I get the right containers.  Speaking of which, let me just take a break here and run to Fred Myers.  I hear they are having a special on storage containers and I might as well get them while I can.  Besides, this piece has obviously not ripened in my brain yet or it would have written itself by now.

Well, that was a wasted trip.  All those containers and none that would archive family papers.  But, a quick trip to Office Max gave me some great ideas on how to make my own file system for it.  And I will, just as soon as I finish this piece.

Gee, look at the time. Where did the morning go?  I have to walk the dog, get to Curves, get the bird cages cleaned and get the trash ready to go out for tomorrow.  I’ll be much too stressed to write until I have those chores done. Then I’ll know I can just relax and get my writing done.  Oh, and walk the dog. If I don’t walk the dog, he’ll never let me write in peace.  Of course, it’s only 10 degrees out so I’d best make that long delayed trip to Pet Food Warehouse to return his Christmas present for one that fits. He’ll need a warm coat today.  And while I’m out, I’ll get a little shopping done. It looks like it might snow tonight, or tomorrow, or the volcano might erupt and I want to make sure my animals and I will have enough ice pops to get us through.

OK, got all those chores done. Now as soon as I make dinner for everyone and eat a bit myself, I’ll be ready to attack that article that’s been waiting for me all day.  I know I’ll be able to concentrate on it because everyone will be fed and put to bed and the evening will be mine, all mine, to just focus. And since it’s too late to drink another latte, I won’t have to worry about the caffeine revving me up so much I can’t sit still long enough to write an entire sentence without a break.

Gosh, who knew that the Golden Globe Awards show would come on while I was finishing up with the birds?  Can you believe some of the outfits those ladies wear?  And, to paraphrase my mother, I mean ladies in the loosest of senses.  Well, now there is absolutely nothing to distract me.  The award show is over and I have a good thirty minutes before the Daily Show comes on.  And I am absolutely going to focus on my article until then. No more distractions, no more…. you know, I never write well when it’s this late.  All my creative energy is already spent. So I might as well watch a Friends rerun and get up tomorrow and start fresh and new.

Yep, that’s what I’ll do. After all, tomorrow is another day.