Monday, October 03, 2005

Opposing forces personified

A Saturday exercise: personify those doubts and fears you feel when you're struggling to write.

"This is too hard," says Thisistoohard. Subtly demeaning, she combines sympathy with scorn. "Can you believe some people get paid to just sit behind a shop counter? And here you are, suffering mental constipation just to get a few words on a page - otherwise you won't get paid!"

The scorn softens: "And it's a shame really" - sympathetically, now - " it's a shame no-one reads those words you put so much effort into."

She looks faint. Do I feel faint? "All I'm saying is, is it really worth it?" I blink. "There must be an easier way to live. Everyone else out there knows it, and you're just trying to pretend it's not true."

Suddenly: "Why don't you wake up!"

I turn back to the screen.

"You're looking in the wrong place!" she yells. "The opportunities are out there, not in here."

Quieter now, subtler: "I don't want to tell you you're wasting your time, but..." A strange, wry smile.


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