I want more empty days too.
I want to make room for a little bit more quiet reflection, sleeping late, afternoon walks, morning drives,
A little bit more time like I had in my childhood.
Writers need the days to be a little bit bare, after all.
It is not always so easy though. Even today I went home for lunch and could not get the hour of stillness I was looking for.
This is perfect, but it can’t just be about solitude.
For time is short, and there is much to do.
And yes – forever – themed parties are a nightmare.
As I write these words, I am, of course, alone. It’s the middle of the day and I have barely stepped outside except to pick up a couple of envelopes full of books and manuscripts that FedEx left on the porch. I have spoken to no one since seven o’clock this morning. I’m wearing the ratty T-shirt I slept in last night. The house is silent. A crow caws outside my office window. These solitary days are my lifeline. They are the lifeline of every writer I know. We hold on to our solitude, fiercely protect these empty days. But at the same time, we long for community. We have no water cooler. No office gossip. No Friday night drinks after work. No weekend softball game. We’re outcasts and loners, more comfortable being out of step than part of a group. If pressed, you’d find that most of us had not pledged sororities or fraternities in college. We don’t tend to be members of clubs. We approach themed parties, baby showers, boys’ nights out, with something like dread.
-Dani Shapiro, Still Writing