Monday, February 11, 2013

Hi, honey! I'm home!

A significant number of readers, along with several people I didn't even know were readers, have called something to my attention: they say I haven't been writing here much. Not since the end of November when I did my last NaBloPoMo.

It's true. I fear I may be suffering from a disease I don't even believe exists: lazy ass writer's block. The reason I don't believe it exists is because the cure is so simple. You just put your ass in a chair and you write. I can't count the number of students I've said that to. I can't count the number of fellow writers. You just put your butt in the chair and you write. It's really that simple. You may not write what you want to write, but you can write. I can write.

The problem is that I do put my butt in the chair ...... I put my butt in a chair more than enough, but I don't write. Or to be more precise, I write a lot, but I don't write here on my blog. I write a lot on Facebook. On Facebook I indulge in long, thoughtful, clever conversations that could inspire me if I didn't also scroll through hundreds of photos of puppies and kittehs, greeting cards and videos. I also write lots of texts. I write reams of to-do lists. But I haven't been writing here.

I have reasons, but they aren't really good ones. It's not that I don't have time. I do all  kinds of other things when I could be writing a blog post. Things like changing a light bulb; reading novels; baking cookies; checking my email; playing Words with Friends; watching Californication ... then Shameless ... then  Project Runway (hate the groups this season) .... then The Taste ... then ....; singing karaoke; texting with 3 people while I'm messaging on Facebook with 2 more; watering my 4 plants; hanging out with friends; going to plays; stealing chocolate chips from the freezer; vacuuming; playing pool; making a cup of tea; finding the tea forgotten on my desk and reheating it; watching the police at the neighbor's house; getting my yoga mat out of the closet; meeting a friend for coffee; checking my blog stats; telling Melvin, "no, I won't go buy you some gin and juice"; playing my guitar; taking a nap; checking Foursquare; putting my yoga mat away without using it; pinning cool shit on Pinterest; writing notes for topics I want to write about ..... and in between each of those, checking Facebook. And texting.

Sometimes I think about making an appointment with my doctor for a Ritalin prescription.
It's also not that I don't have anything to write about. My personal Facebook friends will vouch that I write plenty on Facebook. It's easier there, because the rewards are immediate. People respond. We have conversations, and I never know who will show up. Sometimes the comments -- 20, 30, 50 or more -- continue for hours. Writing blog posts, much as I love it, is lonely work. Facebook gives immediate gratification, especially for a big old extrovert like me.

This is how addictions are created. I need a 12-step program for Facebook.

I also live with my tormentor dominatrix jailer muse, Dolores. Dolores is an intolerant, anti-social, hate-driven bitch, but she's also so fucking productive I can't keep up with her.

All those things I listed above that I do instead of writing? Most of the time as I'm doing those things, Dolores is on my shoulder, hissing in my ear, "Are you on Facebook again? When are we going to write on our blog? Surely you're not going to let yet another day go by! I've kept you awake every night this week .... Is that another text? Don't answer it. I said, Don't answer that fucking text! .... You had to answer it. I'm done with you."

Only she never is done with me. She sits in the corner pouting, drinking dirty martinis from a coffee cup, and painting her toenails. In between coats of polish, she writes ideas on ping pong balls and throws them at my head. My internal landscape is littered with drifts and drifts of ping pong balls.

Here are a fraction of the ideas she's tossed at me in the past week or so: conversations with Melvin; vaginas; meeting new neighbors; revelations that change personal history; possum feet and glitter crayons; 10 Men, 10 Dates; the best gifts; vaginas; chivalry; nice guy syndrome; cheerleaders; Valentine's Day; bourbon; poetry; finding out I was married to a bigamist; vaginas; performance art; poopy diapers; getting stood up; funny things people post on my Facebook wall; do gynecologists get tired of looking at breasts and vaginas?; also, are gynecologists better lovers?; karaoke; rudeness; girdles; chameleons; 1 of 10; cookies; buying a car; dating younger men; moving on; vaginas ....

I have a short list of 35 blog posts I could write today.

Even as I write this one, Dolores, who can't ever be satisfied, is declaring her disgust. She's here beside me .... see her? .... blowing smoke from her clove cigarette in my face and taunting me, "Do you never stop whining? I give you hundreds of ideas to write about. I keep you -- and myself -- awake until the small hours of the morning feeding stories into your head ... I work my fucking ass off  for you and now you're using this time to complain about writer's block? I should walk right out that door. Now pick up one of those fucking ping pong balls and write a real blog post instead of making excuses for why you don't write. Or do I need to call you a whaaammmmbuuuulaaaannnnce?"

No more watching Modern Family with Dolores.

She's right though. I have no good excuse. So tomorrow I'm going to a writer's bootcamp with some other writers. My phone will be stripped away, and I'll  be handcuffed to my laptop for several hours of enforced writing time. I will be held accountable.

Tuesday's post
I've chosen a random ping pong ball, and this is what I'll commit to writing about next. Of course it couldn't be something fun, like vaginas.

Oh, well. Might as well get the humiliation over with. Vaginas are next though, or I'm going on strike.

Damn you, Dolores.


  1. Thought you'd just hide that bigamy thing there in the middle, huh? Delores won't let you get away with that for long. C'mon, spill.

  2. Ha! That one's more a pain in the ass than anything else. I've had an issue with the military over my share of the retirement for some time now. They turned down my latest appeal twice because, so the letter from them said, LtColEx married someone named Barbara in 1998 while he was married to me, and she might also have a claim. LtColEx swears he didn't get drunk on one of his trips to Las Vegas and marry a woman named Barbara.

    In any case, the person who made the mistake died in November, so another woman in the office is going to recommend they approve my appeal - probably because they're embarrassed to have made such a stupid mistake.

    At least I think it was a mistake. If there's a Barbara out there, she needs to get in line behind me.

  3. Ha!Ha! I love Delores. She's so much more interesting than the bitch who lives in my head. I think I'm gonna throw her out and start taking applications for a new voice.

    I wanted to hear more about the bigamy too! Unbelievable mistake. Well, not really. My last military i.d. card (from when I was 17 or 18) has me listed as my dad's spouse instead of as his daughter. So, maybe he's a bigamist as far as the Air Force is concerned too.

  4. Good luck throwing out your muse. I've treated Dolores almost as bad as she's treated me, but she still sticks around. We're like one of those old married couples. I do wish she wouldn't smoke in the house though.