Does September mean getting back to routines for you?
I've put it off all summer - writing something new--like an affair I don't want to have but keeps calling. I've circled my desk, cleaned it down to its bones. But I know it's the routines that make a writer or at least makes me. At my desk by 9:30 am. Write for three or four hours or at least stare at screen until it bleeds or I do. Ignore emails until lunchtime. Part of my new routine: fit in exercise. Too much "at the desk" isn't good I've learned, but if I must, I must be there, working out metaphors, crunching sentences. Ignore the cat tempting me with his fur at the my feet. Return to revise and re-write after dinner for three or four hours. At times, ignore the kids, the laundry, the dish-washing. Goal: Write something new. Make sure each sentence works hard.
I search the wall above my desk for inspiration and find this one that urges me on:
"All writers are vain, selfish and lazy, and at the very bottom of their motives lies a mystery. Writing a book is a long, exhausting struggle, like a long bout of some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand" -- George Orwell.
This fall, Wednesday, the first day of school for my two kids, I will return to the routine of writing. To sustain me --not the big theme parks we visited, not the national museums in Washington D.C. --is the memory of the river outside Athens, Georgia in the morning, the park in Silver Spring, Maryland at dusk. The joy of my children in the simple and my joy in them: