• scrimgerr

Loose Ends and Holidays

I

want to keep you in the loop of my life as I write Belongingness. I sent some material off to Melanie a couple days ago, and I’m waiting for her to get back to me. I don’t know where she’s taking the story. Which is cool. I like being surprised.


Since I finished my chapter, I have had a chance to catch up on my teaching. I am working with a half-dozen busy students this session. It has taken serious attention but, as of this morning, I am up to date with them all.


And I am waiting for my editor at Tundra Books to get back to me with her thoughts on my book about writing. I was late with my rewrite, but she’s had it for a while and she’s back from vacation now. The axe will fall soon.


So right now I am at not one, not two, but three loose ends.


Loose ends are not the same thing as holidays. Holidays are time away from work, where you empty your mind of your job for a couple of weeks, and climb mountains instead, or explore cities, or drink too much and float in a pool. Writers climb and explore and drink and float, but they don’t take holidays because writing is not a regular job. It’s a life.


You could say that the actual ‘work’ of writing, putting useful words on a page, is done an hour or so at a time. In that sense a writer is regularly on holiday. Sure. Fair comment. At the same time, you don’t ever stop thinking about story. I have had one specific story or other in the back of my mind every minute of day for the last 30 years. I suspect that visual artists live like this too, and musicians and film makers. Actors? I don’t know. Their creativity needs something to react to. So much depends on the script.


Right now, waiting for Melanie, and Sam, and my students and, yes, drinking a little bit of wine, I am thinking of a future book. There’s a bully character in my head. I don’t know what will happen to him, what did happen and what he’ll do about it, but I like the idea of a book from his POV. These are the first words I’ve written about him. Maybe his story will occupy my mind on a regular basis in the future.



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Richard Scrimger | scrimgerr@gmail.com | Toronto, ON, Canada