To the Faithful

I do believe it is time again for a break from the Canada to Mexico line of writing, never mind that we haven’t even arrived yet in that place of beans, rice and tequila.

Other things have my attention for now and I would like to share these with you, my dear and faithful reader (I use the singular here intentionally, as I suspect that the few consistent readers I had, have likely left me for someone more faithful in their blogging).

If you find that my writing has taken on a slight haughty air, it is without doubt the result of my reading about the adventures of Don Quixote. Yes, that self-same knight errant that influenced so much of modern literature is the current focus of my attentions, despite the translation hailing from a time (1885) when the British tended to use many words that are no longer in popular usage, particularly in North America. The translator, a John Ormsby, has been taken to task for being too faithful (there is that word again) to Cervantes’ literary style, resulting in a somewhat confusing and dated work that is clearly influencing this reader’s writing. (Confused yet?)

So please forgive me today’s inauthentic style as well as my lack of faithful correspondence via this blog. No doubt I’ll ask your forgiveness again, much like is done regularly throughout important relationships, but let’s just take it two failings at a time, shall we? And yes, you are important to me gentle reader.

My lack of faithfulness has resulted from three things: 1) I recently flew from Mexico to Maui, where my dearest and I recently acquired a new home and where, therefore, many boxes required unpacking; 2) Before and after arriving here at the end of July, I focused on reading rather than writing. I finished two of Kerouac’s works, On the Road – the original scroll and Big Sur, the first several chapters of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice and am now reading both Steven King’s On Writing and Miguel de Cervantes’s Don Quixote.

To write we must also read. However, the reading is currently overwhelming the writing. The move has a lot to do with this, but I must also state reason number 3, for why there has been little writing: 3) I am basically a very undisciplined and lazy person who currently prefers to cook delicious meals, drink wine and watch television, than get up early and force myself to compose something. As you can imagine this not only hampers the writing, but has expanded my waistline considerably. This just won’t do.

I could also argue that my lack of productivity results from my lacking a place to write that has a door that can be closed against any interruptions or distractions, a condition which Mr. King says is essential if we ever hope to become a productive and successful writer (let’s not get into measures of success just yet, it’s the former that we are most concerned with at this point).

Currently,  (yes I mean at this very moment) I am writing at a plastic fold-out table acquired from CostCo, that chain of warehouse discount stores where things are sold in quantities so great as to cause refrigerator crises of gigantic proportions. Who among you has a fridge with room enough to store three 1 gallon containers of milk, five heads of romaine lettuce, four pounds of Parmesan cheese, three dozen eggs, two whole chickens and a partridge in a pear tree?  The CostCo table rests at the confluence of the living and kitchen areas of our new home and has a view (if I turn my head 90 degrees) of a spectacular, lushly-vegetated canyon that leads to a picturesque ocean bay. 

The reason I have to turn my head 90 degrees  to see the view is because the table is rectangular and this is the only way it fits in the available space, but also because, again according to King, a view is counterproductive to writing productivity. He suggests we are better off writing in a closet (as I do when in Mexico) where distractions are kept to a minimum. For example, even though I am right this minute facing 90 degrees from the spect-damn-tacular view, the multitudinous windows in our new abode make it possible for me to look up and note that it is raining again. You might think rain good for productivity, but in this case you would be wrong…because the sun is also shining. It is raining and sunny out and this is a common, but always interesting fact of living on the island of Maui. It makes me want to run outside and look for the inevitable rainbow. Now that’s a serious distraction. Hold on, I’ll be right back…
Alrighty then, the rainbow has been appreciated and photos taken, back to the task at hand.

So the point is this, I’ve moved and I’m trying to get back into the groove of writing every day despite the multitudinous distractions that living in a new place, particularly a gorgeous place like Maui, represents. Yes, this entire blog is one great big excuse.

The Gutenberg Project is an online repository of classic literature available to you the reader for FREE! Check it out.

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