I want to write. I want to write so badly. This feeling is like constipation–the want but not entirely able. Petey drapes his right paw on my left arm, pulling my hand away from the keyboard and says ‘don’t write; not now.’ I work him off and write a little more.
The goal is one page by tomorrow. One page of something other than the piece I’m (still) polishing. Something fresh, something to get me going. An exercise of sorts. I can do that. Can’t I?
There’s something about composing new prose that worries me. I can deal with what I have, can tinker with already finished stories. Like adding garlic or oregano to a frozen pizza. A little extra this, a little more of that and I’m left with the feeling that I’ve created something new. The truth is I’ve only dressed up the old.
What I need is to be able to toss fresh dough, grate cheese, cook up a sauce. Seems easy enough. Taste and texture don’t matter too much. Or do they?
That’s where I’m failing myself. I’m aiming for perfection–or near perfection–the first time around. I backspace, I delete. I begin new files completely, new exercises when the first don’t work. I watch TV. I read.
I do anything I can to avoid to not create an imperfect piece. I can’t let go of the fact that this is just an exercise, this is just a writing group. The goal is just to write and nothing more.
I can’t let go. I think too much. I don’t write enough.
I am too hard on myself. I know that. Don’t tell me that.
I need Petey to put his right paw on my left arm and tell me, ‘Write. Do it so you can afford the fancy treats for me. Do it so you can make a living of this, so your day can be filled with writing. And you will work at home. And you will make enough money and produce and produce and produce great prose.’ I tell myself this.
I aim too high. My goals are lofty, far out of reach.
The goal today is to write one page. One page and nothing more. Just. One. Page.