The Author Calmed

An addition to The Agitated Author—a continuation of that same day; a memoir and reminiscence that one feels the need to write.

A success, and so it continues.

Driven by a properly made cup of coffee, renewed vigor, and rediscovered inspiration, I set to work on the rewrite that will truly satisfy me. A story that I am certain will one day, in the not so distant future, make it onto a store shelf somewhere. For hours, I pound at my keyboard, not just on the meat, but also recreating an outline and squeezing information out of the web until I am certain of what I want to do.

90,000 words. That is the goal, and though at first this sounds daunting, one must take it in stride.

My notebook knows what I mean by now, as I peer at its page. “90,000 words at 3,000 per week, each week a new chapter, a final product of about 30 chapters, ready for editing by the end of September.”

Could I do more? Certainly, but the afternoon is quickly setting in, and there is still work to do.

I have moved, as one must from time to time, and find myself sitting before the fireplace. I push my chair away from the table before me to set to work on the afternoon chores.

The dishes, washed so much earlier in the day and set out to dry some hours ago, must finally be put away. The laundry, the two loads I managed to do between frantic pecking in a desperate attempt to earn my keep in this world, must be dried and folded.

Most important of all though, my caffeine sustenance must be regained. The two bottles of water I've drank since finishing my last cup of coffee have hardly restored my energy, though no doubt better for me. A dash to the kitchen, a shuffling of some drawers, and I have produced it—a bag of Twinings Earl Grey.

Washing the coffee cup, refilling it and heating the water in the microwave for some two minutes is agonizing. I take the time to put away some dishes. Soon after, the bag is steeping, and I can not help but watch as the hot water gradually takes on the tea's color. It starts fast, at first contact the water is immediately yellow and soon brown. Now I need only allow it to steep for a few minutes. I promptly add my sugar to the cup, stirring it swiftly then setting out for the laundry.

This one takes time—folding and hanging clothes, possibly my least favorite chore. How fortunate that my thoughts are buzzing with emerald forests and strange creatures. I realize a book is not on my shelf that I have long fancied ought to be there. A copy of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, a partial inspiration for my current work, and of course Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There would sit beside it, just as well. There's not an empty space. I'd have to make one; perhaps take down some duplicate book. Surely there are duplicates up there somewhere!

After a moment, the laundry is done. My mind is still ticking away at borogoves and toves and how one might fit them into such a setting in a non-intrusive fashion, and without missing a beat, my feet carry me to my tea. I move it, as I must, to the spot before the fire.

I believe I can return to the task now, nearly 2,000 words deep into the first chapter, and with three days left in the week to write and rewrite it. My better half will be home in another three hours. Perhaps she can take a look at it, offer me some string of advice.

Sadly, I'm never satisfied with my work. I sip my tea and smile—well, hardly ever.

Now Reading
The Author Calmed
Read Next
How to Become a Stand-Up Comedian