Monday, November 6, 2017

Writing Time

Back when I was grinding hours away on corporate and client matters I always put aside time to write, that is after dinner, walking the dogs, attending to family matters, etc, which usually left damn few hours. When I retired from being paid for my time I volunteered to become the financial guy at SFWA, little knowing that it would last for almost ten years and consume almost as many hours as a regular job.  Needless to say, my writing suffered, going from grinding out two novellas and some shorts a year to only writing short stories and pieces of novels. The aperiodic nature of accounting and dealing with associates who have day jobs across the time zones and companies that demanded more time than I could afford left me almost too exhausted to write very much.

But  think other factors have contributed to slowing my writing production, including that dark shadow that life casts upon anyone approaching the average mortality age for male citizens of the USA. At eighty, I no longer have the energy that once infused me despite a rigorous program to keep the joints lubricated and range of motion exercised.  Suddenly every cough, every bodily pain foretells the time when it changes from being nothing much to becoming the sound of dark shadow's footsteps.

Reading the obituaries of younger people makes me wonder daily when my heart attack will hit, when a stroke will occur, or when some disability will a strike. Every morning I idly wonder, when I try to move my aching bones and stiff muscles, that maybe not getting up would be a better choice.

Then there's the gradual clouding of my writer's mind, the flood of ideas has become a trickle, my draft plots becoming Gordian knots of confusion, and I find the proper words no longer become easily accessible.  During my dismal periods*  I wonder if my loss of interest in overcoming a problem might be a forewarning of  dementia or worse.  Worst of all, from my perspective is how it is becoming all too easy to just put things aside for later; a later that never seems to come.

And the clock ticks away the remaining time I struggle to finish writing those novels, finish drafting the short stories I've started, start a new story, or attack that stack of books and  magazines I never seem to have time to read.  It's a bitch, this growing older.

But that doesn't stop me from writing.

*When I should be writing comedy.


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