Today Finds Me

Thinking about teaching Mrs. Dalloway, which is one of my favorite books…

It also finds me in a dark mood about writing, and my writing career. It’s hard to continue to work — in the face of so much time elapsing between published projects. I read periodicals, all of which are full of the work of hundreds of other writers, writers other than me, and I find myself thinking: “I could have written that.” And then I wonder: Why didn’t I write that?

I think that the answer is a complicated one. Certainly it involves teaching — although I don’t buy the rationale that teaching shuts down writers. I can still be productive and teach at the same time. And what kind of a writer would I be if the ability to study Mrs. Dalloway with a class  shut down my own work?

But I think it’s a combination of teaching/other work, and the fact that I’ve given four years of my writing life to these novels that haven’t made it out of draft form (and, that I think, quite frankly, are quite good, in some way or another). I want so badly for this one — Ask the First Star — to be the one that makes it out of draft form and between two solid covers. Safely between covers.

But admitting desire is admitting weakness, isn’t it? And inciting vulnerability? Damn.

One thought on “Today Finds Me

  1. Pauls! You are a great teacher and an even better writer! Don’t get yourself down – you’ve go a lot on your plate .. I remember once a few years ago you told me that to be a better writer I had to live as much as I could. I can’t profess to be able to give you useful advise, but it seems like in the next weeks you will likely be overwhelmed with stuff that aches to be written about .. as your student and your friend, you’re gunna be just fine

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