I had a promising idea before I sat down to write. Room 123, my first classroom. I think about it as I’m straightening the living room. Keep thinking about it as I do yoga. By the time I’m folding my yoga mat, I’ve got the first line and I’m ready to go.
I pick up my laptop and head for the dining room. Frances is curled up on the back of my chair. She’s looking especially cute, so I grab my phone to take a photo. I can’t get the light right. I try it from one angle, then another. She wakes up, shifts position, doesn’t look quite so cute. I put my phone down.
I open my laptop and settle into the armchair beside the dining room table. My old dog is now deaf but somehow always knows when I sit down in this chair. She rouses herself from wherever she happens to be napping and staggers into the dining room to join me. I encourage her to make the leap onto the chair. I reach out to help her back legs up. She’s put on a few pounds, and so have I, and now we can barely wedge in together. I shift and adjust so that she has room.
I begin drafting my piece about Room 123. I write the first line, which leads me to another line, and another. They’re fine sentences. Nothing wrong here. But I lose interest in the piece. I catch myself sitting and staring at the screen. Several minutes pass while my mind wanders elsewhere.
I try to take myself in hand and get back to this piece. I reread the sentences I’ve written, think about the direction I want to go. Do I want to write about my students? About myself? What about a description of the room itself? There are plenty of stories here. It’s been nine years since I last turned off the lights and locked the door behind me, but I think about that room nearly every day.
Several minutes later, I’m still sitting here, mind wandering, hands still.
I reread what I’ve written again. It’s fine. Why isn’t this clicking for me? It felt so promising before I started writing. But now that I’m drafting, it doesn’t feel right. There’s no…. necessity to it. I don’t even know how to describe how I want to feel when I’m writing a piece that needs to be written; I just know this isn’t it.
I decide to abandon it for today. After all, there are slices everywhere.
I write a few sentences about my cats. They’re fine sentences, but there’s no click.
I skip a few lines, take a deep breath. Look around. There’s the garage. Inside is my car, Irene. There’s an idea. Begin drafting.
Stop. Reread what I’ve written. It’s fine. Nice. I stop writing.
I skip another few lines, find another idea, write a couple of sentences.
But the blahs overtake me once again.
Nothing feels like it needs to be written today.