Like many authors, I have a day job. And a teenager. And a life.
So, I write when I can. A couple of hours in the evening, as much as I can on weekends. Scribbling notes furiously at lunchtime. Sitting in the customer lounge, waiting while my car is serviced…
Oops! I said my car! My car is being serviced! (Perk of being a writer: you can let your thoughts take you anywhere …anywhere.)
This past week, I did something different. I took the entire week off specifically to work on my current novel. There was some procrastinating, but mostly, I worked diligently. I had a complete draft at the beginning of the week, and wanted to spend the time editing.
It was an enlightening experience. I’ve never been able to spend such a large amount of time with my characters all at once. Immersing myself in their story, so deeply, and without interruption proved intoxicating! I fell asleep in my story at night, and woke up with my characters in the morning. It reminded me of the clear and unfettered imagination of my youth.
This is what it must be like to be a full-time writer! Days spent watching the story you created as it unfolds. Arguing with your characters when they won’t do or say what you want them to. Feeling their joy and their hurt as you lovingly guide them on their journey. I’m so sorry, Claire, that I made you weep so much!
Today is “back to reality,” and I feel as if I’m waking from a dream. I did not know I was still capable of being so deeply absorbed in the fantasies of my own mind. And while I don’t mind too much that I need to wash clothes and dishes, and run to the grocery store, I feel just slightly despondent, because I don’t know if the same Claire and Aaron will greet me when next I sit down at my desk to type. Will we still be as intimate as we have been the past week?
I hope so! Claire still needs to navigate the labyrinth of shame and guilt she is trapped in, and I’m pretty sure only I can help her. And Aaron? Well, who wouldn’t want to come home to him?