Photo by Rita Bourland - 2012
Once the hallmark of a busy writer, piles of crumpled paper strewn around the desk are no longer there to signify a day of hard work. Such a sad loss for a writer. The wadded up papers used to indicate busyness, genius, frustration and creativity. They were also a ‘do not disturb’ sign for any possible intruders.
Can’t you see there’s important work being done here, they seemed to cry.
All those words strewn about the floor in angry dismissal. It was cathartic to toss them aside. They spoke for the writer.
Too wordy, too boring, too careful, not enough detail, too much detail, and so on.
But all those words lay silently taunting the writer as well.
You can’t do better than me. I’ll just lie here quietly. You may want to take another look at what I have to offer.
So, sometimes a crumpled paper was retrieved by a writer who was ever so grateful she still had access to her previously rejected prose. With a loud, AHA, she would kiss the words on the page, and place the paper back on the desk for further work.
I miss crumpled paper. I miss signs of my tortured struggles. Hours spent in front of the computer searching for the right word or the right phrase can pass by with nothing to show for it. There is no way to know how many sentences I’ve begun, only to delete them one by one with a tap of the backspace key.
I want something to crumple, something to toss, something to add gravity to the creative angst I’m going through. I want proof that what I’m doing has meaning and a physical presence in this world.
I’ve been working hard all day. I really mean it!