I take the dog out and it’s pouring rain and I’m not happy about it. I come in with the dog and turn the laptop on and turn the kettle on and start thinking about where I left off. I make some coffee in a French press and sit down.
The sun comes out and I’m not happy about it.
I pick up where I left off, and I’m not happy about it.
I write a few lines that I’m not happy about, then I start to think about something else. I’m not happy that I’m thinking about something else so I write a few more lines, and maybe there’s one or two that I’m happy about, so I write a few more.
I go to the bathroom. I look at the dog for a while. I think about how it’s nice outside and the dog’s looking at me and I could be out with the dog instead, or on my bike, but if I was out there instead of writing, well, I wouldn’t be happy about it.
I set to it again and get a whole paragraph or two down that I’m not happy about, but I’m a bit happy that they’re at least on the page so I can make something better of them later. I read some of what I’ve written on previous days or weeks or months so I can remember what I need to remember to write a few more lines. I’m happy about some of what I’ve written, and the momentum carries me through a few more lines I’m not particularly happy about.
I submit to the dog’s request for pets, attention. I fold some laundry. While I’m folding the laundry I think of a way a character might say or think about something, then I decide the character has chosen the wrong career path and needs a new one, pronto, and that all traces of previous employment need to obliterated from the record. I think about the amount of work that’s going to take, and I’m not happy about it, but I’ll do it anyway, because I’d be less happy if I didn’t.
I get a few more paragraphs or lines or words down, and I stop for lunch. I take the dog out or pick up some groceries, then I do roughly the same thing I did all morning. At the end of the day, if I haven’t ended up on the internet or folded too much laundry or cleaned too many rooms, and if there are some greater number of words on the page then there were yesterday, I’m happy about it, or happy enough to do it again tomorrow.
David Kloepfer’s first novel (Vancouver: Now or Never Publishing) was released on October 15, 2019. He is happily working on a second, third, and fourth novel.