I did not face my fiction demons today


I did not do any writing today–my friend ditched a class, and I ditched my plans to do some fiction writing. We did absolutely nothing, avoiding our obligations with the pepper of chatter. Highly disfunctional at first glance–but if you were to look more closely, realize that we were fulfilling a need to….relaaaax.

What did we do? We ate lunch, walked up and down an avenue, browsing in the multiple shops. Our pitstops at a cafe and two bookstores absorbed most of our attention. We discovered gems like a signed first edition copy of Michael Chabon’s Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, shrieking amidst the tomes.

I bought her a copy of Murakami’s Wind Up Bird Chronicle and a Yasunari Kawabata novel. She bought me a copy of Flannery O’Connor’s short stories. I pointed to an alphabetical point in the bookshelf and said, “When I’m feeling low, I like to imagine my book sitting right there. That’s where my last name would be, and that’s where my book would be.” She clapped her hands, and we determined where HER book would be.

We carted our books back home and sat under the budding maple tree with hot mugs of rooibos tea. We gossiped (did a Famous Writer (not currently a writing professor anywhere) really call an MFA peer for a booty call? Or was the MFA peer insane? WE determined she might be insane). We encouraged each other. We philosophized. I dreamt of reading for miles again, and writing fiction again.

Yes, we were avoiding things–I know that I was avoiding the confrontation of writing fiction. I’m afraid I can’t do it, I’m afraid of what will come out, I’m afraid to face my fiction for the first time since my stroke. Whatever–I substituted like for like: I had a good day, just hanging out, on a beautiful Spring day.



Filed under The Stroke, Writing

7 responses to “I did not face my fiction demons today

  1. Eric

    You WILL do it – when you’re damn good and ready.
    I’m so busy these days that I have to admit a little tiny bit of jealously for your lovely day spent with a great friend doing so many lovely things…

  2. Eric, if/when you venture out here again, I’d be happy to spend a lazy day with you. 🙂

  3. mel

    But you had a good day, and that is important. Plus you made moves to face those demons. You took some steps. You’ll get there.

    (Plus gossiping is kind of storytelling, right?) 😉

  4. Wish I were there enjoying a Spring day as well. It snowed about 3 inches here today, so nothing like Spring. If California is anything like Wisconsin though, change can happen quickly. Glad you had a good day. Avoiding can be healing too sometimes!

  5. It sounds like a GREAT day. It was just what you needed.

  6. w

    This sounds like a wonderful respite, Jade. I remember fondly the walks a fellow MFA pal and I would take just to get away from the program and relax. We’d talk about everything and nothing. We’d talk about the stories brimming in our minds, tentatively testing these stories out on each other, and realizing that in those conversations, in those walk, we were enriching not only a literary dialogue but a friendship. I miss those moments, and I miss that friend.

  7. that sounds like a fantastic day! i must be geographically near leroy–it was nasty out and i pulled yet another 12-hour day amidst the sleet and snow. you deserved today.

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