― Helen Keller
I've built my life on conversations with friends,
I had two on Friday morning, back to back, one in a tiny corner of The Nook - the kind of place where everyone knows your name. The next at colorful Cora's on Waverly, where a mango smoothie is absolute divine I indulged in both, mango and conversation.
This morning - quite early I was in Perkins, Monday breakfast with my editor friend. Time slips quickly as we share our lives...over a bottomless cup of coffee.
I am relishing these conversations more than ever.
Then mid-afternoon, I'm at the Original Pancake House, central and spacious. Another place great for conversation. Again someone involved in Corrections.
These conversations are especially important to me at this time because I am seeking direction, A few months back, facing this impossible three month deadline, I retreated from everything so I could burrow deep into my thoughts, ruminate over every defining moment in my life, examine every relationship, every conversation and cry every tear again.
Actually, such a discipline is hard on the soul, and I've emerged a bit of a wreck at the end of it all. I ate too much, grew my hair too long, and forgot how to converse. I indulged in total self-absorbed and it isn't easy to come out of that. I feel socially alienated, even from myself.
So now during this marathon of exquisite conversation, as I'm listening to my friends, I'm indulging in the conversational topics of my choice. The main one is: "What to do after finishing a book to deadline?"
How does one compete with that kind of adrenaline rush.... horrific as it is?
My friends don't seem to mind - exploring.
There are speaking opportunities which are always good, work opportunities. But they don't answer that hollowness that can only be filled with one thing. Write a another book. Even if I can't publish it, I can write, and write and write.
No! It can be just one book. Book ideas breed more book ideas. By end of day, I have three books aching to be outlined.
Building friendships, building books, stacking conversations, stacking books.One shouldn't stack friends.
But I can stack conversations, stack books, stack ideas, stack plots, and characters and.....
This is not an easy life - to be a writer of books.
We live in a fantasy world, a world of illusion. The great task in life is to find reality. Iris Murdoch