My brother comes upstairs for a visit with me almost every morning now bearing gifts of coffee from the usual place. This morning he opened the door and, instead of a good morning, he greeted me with “How do you write?” It came rather out of nowhere. He had many questions and I don’t know why these thoughts came to him. It doesn’t matter, really. This is quite an about face from the “why bother journaling” he spat at me many months ago. He wanted to ask if I have a secret yearning to write a novel.
I explained between sips from my “Witch’s Brew” mug that a phrase will come to me while doing the most mundane things like washing dishes, folding laundry, or driving to work. And the period I did the most writing was also the most heartbreaking time for me. I confessed that most of those poems can’t compete with what is considered “literature” and I probably shouldn’t submit them for literary chapbooks, but I’m not giving up. He asked why do I care what “literati” think, suggested that I’m aiming too high. I don’t expect him to understand the complex voices in my head that fight over what I write, how, and for whom.
I told him this is National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), and I have no desire to participate in writing a novel at this time. I have a few flash pieces that could be developed into something bigger, but I haven’t chosen to do so. Not a goal right now. (Well, knowing what’s NOT a goal does help to establish what IS, hmm?) But just the act of discussing these things with him was stimulating and helpful. And I do believe my next chapbook submission will be called “Lovesick Girl Puke,” will be read by the teenage demographic, and that’s all right with me. Kidding…not kidding.