Reclaiming Normal

Today, we have rain. Dreary, half-hearted rain, straight down and gray. It’s the kind of rain that makes the day seem dark, and I feel like I’m still waiting for sunrise.

I’m working on that pesky chapter. You know, the one. It’s the one I was working on just before all the stuff happened, and I wound up shifting to a large-scale structural revision.

There are serious mental blocks with this one.

It’s partly because this is a chapter I’ve worked on and walked away from and failed with more times than I want to think about.

And it’s partly because this is the place where things go back to normal, and I’m not quite ready for things to be normal.

I don’t talk about my writing with most of my family because I already know the response. Go get a real job. Or, if the person is being a little more diplomatic, What does that pay? You’d be surprised how many of the family stories I used to hear involved the phrase, “And they lived happily ever after, as soon as he gave up that silly dream and got a real job.” (In one notable version, the prince also promised to get the children’s ears pinned back.)

We’re a family of ex-creatives. The talented photographer who morphed into a doctor, or the painter who turned into an accountant. People who accept that their creative goals are just as unreachable as that childhood dream where they were going to be an astronaut.

I didn’t talk to my sister about this, either. Plenty of reasons, there. Do you really want to tell one of those nervous types “Hey, I’m writing a thriller where the homicidal maniac tracks his victims through their cell phones.” “Yes, you can do that.” “Yes, it’s even legal.”?

I didn’t. I think she knew I wrote in the past, and maybe she suspected that I was still writing.

Shameful little hobby.

And now–with a lot of the fat cut away–I’m back to working my way through. Front to back.

Back to normal.


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