Friday, May 27, 2005


I must have looked like a I was laboring hard going up the hill, because a woman stopped and offered me a ride today. I had left a little later, it was a little warmer, and the hill doesn't get any flatter. "Or are you exercising?" I said I was, laughed and thanked her. It was almost tempting.

Agymah and I were talking over dinner last night and I mentioned how I had the illusion that while here at the writers' colony I would be able to write so much faster (cue Rosalind Russell typing madly in His Girl Friday). We both laughed, and he said "It never gets any faster, does it?" But I guess in the back of my mind was the picture of me, freed at last from all my other responsibilities, fingers flying, muses chattering--I realize just how much this is fantasy when I notice that it also pictures the sheets of paper piling up beside me. Without a printer, no pages are piling up! There was at least that tangible proof of effort back in the days of typewriters. Too often now I don't want to waste paper, so I seldom see things I've written in physical form until they appear in print.

So I resign myself to being no faster, but then speed is a relative thing (cue the "Speed 3" episode of Father Ted). And if I write no faster, I do have more time, so as Gene keeps reminding me, I should be glad for what I am getting done, not lamenting what I have not yet done.

The workshop yesterday seemed to go well. A small group, which was probably best for the format, and very eager. I played a little kantele, even sang a song ("Mieleni minun tekevi") and we talked about sound and rhythm in writing, the power of myth and the ways creativity gets crushed or dismissed. I had them do a writing exercise describing their own personal muse, which had surprising resonance for many of them. Their writings had that vividness that calling into being a needed supporter gives. One woman said she tried to shape her muse, but finally had to give in to the real vision that came through. Another woman described with lively detail her little Chihuahua. We chuckled, but she made a convincing argument for the loving support and encouragement she gets daily. Unconditional love is a wonderful thing. By the end everyone seemed to have had a good time. A few said it should have been much longer.

CONGRATULATIONS on ten years invoking the punk muse at WECS, Marko! (Argh, the signal keeps cutting out--but I heard that :-)


Unknown said...

You may not have pages piling up, but you've sent me several files already - so just imagine bits piling up! And while the writing process itself can't really go much faster, you do have more time to spend on it - and I can tell that you've accomplished far more writing in under two weeks than I've ever seen you do before in a similar length of time. It also sounds like the workshop went really, really well. Keep up the great work!

Ahhh, "Speed 3" - I just watched an episode of Father Ted last night ("Are You Right There, Father Ted?" - where Ted keeps inadvertantly insulting Craggy Island's Chinese population). Father Ted is simply one of the best comedies of all time. Pity that Channel 4's official Father Ted website doesn't have more content - but it does offer lots of aggravating back-and-forth clicking, plus a couple of games as rewards for the persistent. (And it even taught me a new word!)

C. Margery Kempe said...

Ah, Father Ted! Brilliant show. And so influential -- I think the second best moment in Alan Moore's Angel Passage (as opposed to the second best smell, which we all know is Choppers) is when he channels Father Ted, saying Blake is not very small, only far away...