Creeping toward progress. Slouching toward Bethlehem. Fighting the good fight.

Monday is different than Friday. Tomorrow will be different than the day after.

Is the book all fixed? Is Lynn all better?

Not exactly. But it’s okay. Got through a readback of the entire lofty, impossible chapter without wanting to go lay my head on a railroad track. The thing is wordy, too full of thoughts, a little ponderous. The exalted original thinking I’ve been working toward and worrying about—the form that will present the language—aren’t entirely there. Yet. Maybe, in this particular ethos, there IS no original thought. Whatever.

When I clicked the tape recorder off in the dark room last night I wasn’t in the least tempted to throw the helpless little instrument against the wall. I didn’t offer my self the mildly self-congratulatory “That’s not bad”…nor did I offer myself a much more heartfelt “Wow” except at the very end. Neither did I tell myself “You suck” and proceed to beat myself about the head and shoulders with a blunt object. The reaction was closer to “That’s okay, Lynn. So far, so good, but you still have work to do”; considering the rampaging despair of recent days, that will be enough for now.

A dodgy state of emotional affairs it is when one regards a reaction of you-don’t-suck as progress. It should give you some idea of the depth of the hole I’ve dug myself into in recent days. But to accept that more hard work will get us where we’re going…to accept that there is a basis of something valuable in the writing—and, even more importantly, in the writer’s ability—well, I’ll take it. For now.

Writing is fighting, sometimes. And in the squared circle of myself, I haven’t yet gone 15 rounds. I’m in for the bout, not down for the count. And although I may look as punched-out as Rocky, I’m duking it out with myself. All the way through the bell.

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