Original writings by Adrienne Nater

Uninspired

 

There she sat at her desk. Just like every other day. Different though. Today cloaked in a gray robe, with her thoughts gray, colorless, unimaginative. She leaned backed, folded her hands behind her head, rocked, stared upward. The ceiling stared back from its neat rows of tongue and grove planks. Her fingers drummed on the keys. She lowered her gaze, refocused: the curser was blinking, challenging, daring her to get on with her creative writing. Nothing happened, no words magically formed in front of her. She pushed her glasses up, they tended to slide down, needed to be adjusted, would get to that one day.

Nothing to inspire, not the many years of the good past, her horse showing, piloting her own plane, travel, travel, travel, developing a farm, getting her teaching career underway, finding surfing, her mental good list was long. The real bad past being fired for supporting the have notís, making poor, poor mate selections, this was a short list. The current year of living, tranquil. Where was the problem? Was there a problem? There was zilch. What about the future, even tomorrow, what was there? All she wanted was an inspiration for story writing.

How to show happiness, productivity, excitement on the inside, anger on the outside? So, letís get on with the positive. Go away depression; anger turned inward she knew. Begin right now to be shedding hopes of the easy way out. Just STOP IT! Get on with all the good in life. Get on with something, anything. Misery was a habit. She nodded in agreement. I was all in her head. Her body reminded her of that. Was it some degree of perfection? An acceptance? Approval?

To the kitchen to defrost ten peas. Back to her chair to squeeze the peas out of their hulls for the baby bird; her rescued one. She had been able to write quite a story about this bird. The juices had flowed while she was composing then they had dried up leaving her in a drought of misgivings. What to do now? Play a game of solitaire. Click on the icon, moved the mouse cursor over the queen of hearts, click, move her over to the king of clubs. At least that would take up the time before the evening routine.

Later made no difference. She checked the time. Got up, pushed off her gray walking shoes not bothering to untie the laces, marched down the hallway to the kitchen, opened the refrigerator, took out a bottle of white wine, poured in half a glass, got her cheese stick, stripped off the sealing wrapper, went back to her room, into the chair, bit off a piece for the bird began to ruminate. How to be happy, pleased with the seventy-six years, "thatís the spirit," that had brought her this far into living a good life, she thought that it was a good, enviable life; but what now? She couldnít help the smile, heard the quiet laughter. What a fool. She was loved, respected, had done well, what in hell did she want? She knew.

She wanted that high productivity, the high of her manic stages in life, but not the painful lows. She had to admit that some productive writing was done during lows. Being in neutral was a bore. She scratched her ear, elbow on the desk pad, hand beneath her chin, fingers moving with a soft stroking pattern, began to consider the absurdity of the situation. She shook her head laughed to herself at herself. It was supposed to be simple.

Just make up a character, a plot and get on with it! Thank God, this day was over.

The rain had passed on to the east. This morning was full of bright light. So was she. No inspiration yet, but no being in the depths of dark despair. Today it was ok to be in the search for an idea. It was like her dream from last night; restoration and recovery after an earthquake; to cover up the destruction or clear out the relics, profit from the healing process time creates.

She looked around her room. She had designed, built all the furnishings: cabinets, desk, counters, bookcases, shelves. Miles of books, videos, DVDs, pictures, trophies, handcrafts, notebooks filled with research projects, the bird cages, the miscellaneous office items. White, clean, just to her liking. Everything was to the good. Years ago, she had written a story that started in this same room. Unfinished. Perhaps she should get back to that manuscript. Classical music coming from the Bose radio. Her sparrow came to her shoulder for a snack. She had already prepared the fireplace for the evening, done her chores of bird feeding and dog cleanup. It was too muddy to work in the garden. She did manage to plant a new plot of scallions. No lunch today in preparation for an MRI at 2:00; blood given at the lab early the morning.

Writing words but no creative direction. Come on ideas. She closed her eyes, quieted, lifted her hands, rubbed them together, settled her fingers back on the keyboard, a-s-d-f-j-k-l-;, she waited for inspiration. She was acquainted with the maxim that art was not all inspiration but hard work. I am willing to work, the question was on what. The plot? Who is the character, with what intention, for that matter, what was her intention? Keeping in mind, what would she do? Do was the mantra taught in her class. DO, do, do? First, a situation, then a character. Good grief, nothing. Give it a rest. Go get the mail. ______________________________________________________________

In the shower, rubbing her fingers through her soapy hair; the idea came: what about a character who has a bout with multiple medical contacts during a short period? The character was clearly defined in her mind, the events somewhat blurred. The creative would fill in as she composed even if it was just for fun: She rushed back to the keyboard typed: words flashed across the screen.

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