Okay, Listen Here

Okay, Listen Here

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

The Ogre’s Life For Me

There are times I wake up feeling like a pirate (which are more often than not). I envision the wind tussling my hair, smell the pungent tang of salt in the air, tilt my head toward the rising sun and repeat, “Give me that horizon.” On these particular days, it’s as if every step I take leads me across a deck filled with scurrying hands eager for a hard day’s work and my ingenious guidance. Expectancy energizes the air, freedom brightens my eyes, and my mission, should I choose to accept it, to write about pirates, is an adventure fit for me.

I love days like these best. Memorable days, exciting days, these are the scenarios I yearn to repeat when I awake. “Arrrrr!” is my response to hubby when he tells me “good morning.” That produces a smile. And should anyone wonder? I’ve always been attracted to surviving the night to rove the earth another day. But I want to do so by the sweat of my brow, not by the blood of the innocent. Pirate!

Dear ones, I am forced to seque to THOSE days when, from the moment I first wake up, each step is a miraculous feat. Like Frankenstein’s Bride, I achingly move my platformed feet across the floor, moaning in disdain. Mirrors crack in my wake, cats and dogs scurry for their lives and with hands extended, I scream, “Brains! Brains!”

Some days, my friends, it’s the Ogre’s life for me. From the moment I open my eyes, I know full well what the day will bring. Hubby heralds a morning salutation and my response is, “Arrrrrrrrrrr!” (Not to be confused with “Arrrrr!” mind you.)

Of course, no one can anticipate days like these. A mercenary affliction, these mornings strike without warning. I certainly don’t go to sleep thinking, “Gee, I wonder what hubby would think if I woke up in the morning looking and acting like the walking dead.” It might give his heart a jump start to know he’d bedded down with a creature of the night but I’m reasonably sure hubby would rather see a disheveled beauty with a jaunty step and a hearty "Arrrrr!" saunter to his side. Pirate!

Heaven knows he isn't going to warmly welcome the zombie creaking across the floor.

Have you ever had writing days like this? Some days rock, some sink to the bottom of Davy Jones’ locker with an orca-sized kerplunk. Immersed in my writing, I often get an euphoric feeling of empowering genius. I can even hear Commander Norrington's exalultation. “Do you suppose she does this on purpose or is she really that good?”

Other times, a deep-throated “Arrrrrrrrr!” and a stiff-armed reach for the computer monitor are my greatest impulse. Those particular days have me screaming for, “Brains! Brains!”

In a day and time when zombies reign supreme in literature, I ask you, do bad writing days find you running through the mall screaming for creative brains? How do you balance your moods and creativity on days like this, and find the balance that calms the savage beastie?


  1. Fun post, Kathy.

    On days such as those I find it better to pull back, find a place of beauty, and breathe that beauty in, allowing it to flow through my veins until I am revitalized. Then I can find the calm in the eye of the writing storm and focus. Week 12 of our Mad House Adventures is putting this practice to the test, but I am bound and determined not to cast about in a crazed zombie rampage.

  2. My whole year has been a search for brains. Sometimes I rather feel like Scarecrow from The Wizard of Oz -- "If I only had a brain."

    I started a yoga class last week hoping that will help with some of the stress (and tone the abdomen too). I also have meditations I listen to on my iPod, though they generally put me to sleep and I get a nap whether I want or need it or not. :-/


  3. Crystal, I love walking about in a zombie crazed rampage. LOL! Being silly in front of my peeps, of course. I really don't like others to see how Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde I can get. ;)

    PM, love the comparison with The Wizard of Oz. Scarecrow was always my favorite character! Though I do like to repeat the line, "Courage," in the lion's voice.
    You've shown tremendous courage throughout last year and this one and I'm so glad to hear you're writing again. Forge ever onward with your eyes on the horizon. Let the compass spin toward what you want most. :)

  4. Deadlines. :) The surest cure for what ails you than anything else I know. So far, that is. ;)

  5. Deadlines! Yes, I can see why that would motivate a writer under any circumstances. Thanks for posting, Lynn!

    (Note to self: Must impose stricter deadlines into my schedule, rain or shine, headache or headache-free, jaunty pirate or bride of Frankenstein. ;)

  6. Hmmm. Stricter self-imposed deadlines... Hmmm...

  7. LOL! Crystal, calling the kettle black, eh? (snicker)

  8. Today was one of those rocking days. Now it is a bad writing day. For the first time ever in my careful life, I lost what I wrote today due to my own impatient stupidity. Me--queen of back up.

    I'm going to go eat something.

    Then I am going to depend on my almost total recall brain to get it back in the document.

    Normally, I would be Pollyanna and say, "At least it wasn't worse! Yea me! I have a good memory and I'll get it back. No one is sick. No one is dying. No one is even mad!"

    Except I don't have it in me right now. My team lost last week and I did not click on save.

  9. Oh, Jean! I hate it when stuff like that happens. I sure hope you didn't lose a lot of writing. Sending mojo your way in hopes that you'll be able to draw out that scene again and get back to where you started. :)

  10. None of the people around me (my writing buddies excluded) have any brains so I would starve to death. I have not written in two days thanks in the most part to those brainless people! Deadlines? I can't even finish a page lately...

  11. Ah, I am sorry that the Brainless are causing havoc in so many lives.

    I think we all have those days. My bad days tend to be because my life is overbooked. Sometimes I have no control like with work but sometimes I just think I can be Super Girl and do everything.

    I am working on my ability to say "No, I appreciate you thinking of me but I just can't take one more thing on right now. Maybe next year."

    I practice it in front of the mirror.

  12. Cheryl, surely you aren't talking about the wonderful southern gals at Okay, Listen Here? (Winks innocently. ;)

    We'll work through the deadlines together, okay? Shall we make up a strategy to follow throughout November? Compose a blog post with deadlines or stat counters?

    Stephanie, I need to practice in front of the mirror too. But I swear I'm learning. ;)

  13. I redid my stuff. I need a bloody Mary and a gal pal lunch!