Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Every Year

When I go back to school, every year it seems, someone asks me, did I get any writing done? I stare at them. What? Writing? What is it? Is summer over? Did I tell you I was going to write? I am writing right now!
As you can imagine, they don't get a very straightforward answer and they probably only cared politely anyway but still it makes me wonder, what did I do? If summer is marked by the number of cherries eaten, it is abundant but unverifiable. If it is marked by a bunch of words, well, at least it happened. I have it right here in my word doc.
I took a screen shot of the files I'd made over the summer. Sadly, "Thrift Store no China" and "Moocs" had no actual words written in the file but a file name is writing nonetheless. The rest of them have something in them. Some more than others.

So, in case you run into me in the hall and I strike a face of complete battiness and look like i'm trying to catch mosquitoes with my mouth, here is a list of filenames I wrote including the filename "Written so far this summer"
Written so far this summer
Fiction Nonfiction
Thriftstores no china
Birthday Party Superfund
I Should write about small things
FGP Final Report
IV Bags
Tiny Pieces
NaU Quarterpage Ad
Nonfictio Bestseller SPD
Who is going to protect us now
Nonfiction authors
Utah and autism
Hard rain
There are only two inches left in
CV 3
Global warming blog
Walker, Nicole bio new
You can choose what you remember
Sabbatical grants
The problem with abortion
Pen application
Writing projects
Sexa dn Castros and Elizabeth Smart
Newspaper blog contacts
New york times drinking in the 80’s
I met Michael Martone
Max’s Lunch
Metaphors about Food
Hypocrisy and Kindness
Wine dreams
Micro folder
Micropreemies with essays on the inside
My gallery is showing the cool kids
Micro query
Tiny Houses
Where Animals Folder
There are only trains and washing machines
Categorically 2
Where are the elephants
It does not matter who you marry
Don’t Look like you’re looking

Lemon and Limes

Some of these I only futzed with--like Where Elephants and Neutrinos. I completely rewrote Microwine for a magazine. I also fully edited Micropreemies with such a comb of fine teeth that many of the words got stuck on the netherside of the comb. I just finished an essay. Should I send it?
I have already been rejected by The Believer for Fiction is Just Nonfiction that Hasn't Happened Yet. Why do they always write, "Thank you for your unwavering patience." My patience only wavers because they didn't take the magazine--not because I had to wait so long (not long) for the rejection. 
Some tiny essays got picked up and the big long Micropreemies did too. I tried to be really opinionated for the Huff Post but I am nothing if not conflicted about everything. 
I wrote a sabbatical proposal. Sometimes writing is a tool to wedge upon a future where someone will ask, did you get any writing done and you'll say, duh, I had to. I was on sabbatical.
It will be two years before anyone asks me that. 
May I look them more solidly in the eye--or at least take a screen shot of file names to pass around at that faraway faculty meeting. 


radagast said...

Ooo. I want to poke around in so many of these files. Max's lunch. Microbladder. Tongue Pig. I know you're saying there's nothing in the file but a name (what's in a name?), but in my mind I'm already getting paper cuts.

Nik said...

Some of the files have whole words. Some whole sentences. Some are done. Some are just dreams of a fullness.

Lisa B. said...

"Sabbatical" will be a very long & satisfying word doc indeed, I predict.