Knowing When to Say When…

I remember the day that I stopped playing baseball. It was a sunny Sunday with a sky so blue that a baseball floating against that sky could hypnotize…it was ‘Norman Rockwell’ beautiful. ┬áIt was a great day for adult league baseball. I was creeping up on my middle 40’s and the other players were seemed younger…and faster. My interest in playing was waning…and so was my playing time. I wasn’t sore at the younger, better, younger players. I was upset at Father Time.

His unbeaten streak continues…

I also was upset that my dreams were unraveling. I thought that I would live to love Baseball and live to play Baseball each and every day.

Now I wonder about the time that I wasted, chasing my “Diamond Dream”.

I replaced Baseball with Darts. Falling fanatically in love with the game (especially since the game is married to beer drinking…WINNING!!!) and going to all ends to find a match. I was pretty good, and to this day, I enjoy playing the game.

Let me cut to the chase…it takes some of us a while…it’s taken me 50+ years to “get it”. Now…I get it. Writers attend “writing groups” and writers guild meetings. Writers go to conferences and rub elbows with other writers. Writers spend evenings reading and writing.

Enter a caption

Therefore, this blog is my retirement from competitive sports and games. I will compete, recreationally, and might throw one night a week in league. That’s it though. No tournaments, no traveling to find a league or tournament. I AM DONE! I’ve spotted King, Rice, Koontz and Gaiman QUITE a few years and I have a lot to learn just to be competitive in their arena.

For those of you that know me personally, you are aware that if I pick up the mental aspect of writing, the concentration and other dirty work, the way that I picked up some sports, then don’t worry…

I’ll be just fine.

How I Do…

I’ve been asked on numerous occasions, “How do you write a …”

My response is always, “By writing the first word.”

I wish that it was that simple. On some days writing is easy…on other days, writing is a real pain in the…

The most important thing that I do is sit down and…wait…wait for the voices to tell me what I should write on that day.

Here’s the confession…I don’t write anything. All I do is transcribe what they…The Voices…choose to tell me.

On those days that I try to write regardless of what I’m hearing, I tend to write suite.

How do I  do it?

I listen.

This morning,  the voices awakened me at 5AM, screaming the words that I  needed to hear. The words that I needed…to do what I do.

I used to have torrid fear when I heard nothing but silence. I long for the silence…

…for it means that the words were coming that would allow me…

…To Do What I Do.

What I Do…

What I do is…hunt a unicorn. Every single day.

Perfect prose. Elusive…attainable?

I wish explaining it was that simple. It never has been.

I will say this much, and it is true…anyone can write…it takes a lot of practice to write well.

Most of my efforts aren’t actually spent during a hunt. I spend  an enormous amount of time at the practice range. Hoping that my efforts will reward me with one shot…just one…at my target.

What I do is write. What I want to do is “Write Well”.

What I  do…is hunt for that illusory unicorn of writing…the perfect piece of prose that needs no translation. It is all things…to all people.

What I do…is wake with a cup of ideas and a endless supply of coffee. I start with a word…then a sentence…a paragraph…I study it…edit it until it looks good to me. Then…I move on.

Every now and then, after hundreds of paragraphs and thousands of words, I have to return to an earlier thought. Revise…edit…regroup.

What I do isn’t difficult…it is impossible.

I’ve glimpsed the unicorn in my dreams. I will probably die, like so many others, hunting the unfulfilled dream. Spread my ashes with the remains of the others seeking the same fantasy. Our ideas and fantasies rest in a shifting pile of carbon cinders, at the hooves of this creature.

What I do…