Three things in the past few months have been pushing me to write. First one was the publication of an awesome collection of short stories by George’s brother-in-law. When George and I spoke for the first time after it came out, his comment was, “You were going to do that.”. The second was the pleasure I got from the vacation updates from Greece. This article was the third.
I know why I stopped. It wasn’t some feeling of failure, or inability to think of what to write. No, my Faustian deal was that I would give it up, at least for now, because I wanted a life different than the one writing promised. One that allowed me to live as a normal human being, and not the miserable, nocturnal, dissatisfied fiend looking for the next high that I have been chasing since the first time I read a piece of writing I had just finished and was moved.
I buried that version of me in a shallow grave about fifteen years ago, after I had revised a book-length document to the point of being able to recite entire passages by heart. Some of the best sentences and turns of phrase that I have ever read are contained within it. (So you see I don’t lack confidence in my writing.)
I sometimes miss the person that wrote that book. But I also remember looking like a junkie, and probably smelling like one, too.
But as I read the seven questions below, they all lead me back there. Maybe it’s time to get a shovel.