Summer of Dog-Ears or Distracted Mind

Indira Ganesan, Soon, 2012

Indira Ganesan, Soon, 2012

 

It has been a summer of dog-earing, folding down corners of books and projects that will be finished later.  In my home, the rooms are scattered with magazine articles and stories I am coming back to, novels I’ve opened and marked, little dog-ears that promise later, soon, maybe in the winter.  I have a book of stories open at the table where I eat meals, and I’ve been on the story for days.  The story is very good, but I am compelled after I eat to clear the dishes, and go on to something else, even while thinking, why not just sit and finish?  It wasn’t always like this.  Books were read.  A friend once asked, looking at my books, have you really read all of these?  Of course, I replied, surprised, thinking, that was why they were shelved.  Who would own books they hadn’t read, I thought.  That was decades ago.  Now my shelves are full of the partially read, the near forgotten, the new ones.

Once I stayed in this town refusing to leave until  I finished my first novel.  I did, and began another, moved, then spent ten years moving and finishing the second book.  A few more moves, fourteen years pass, and a third gets completed.  Now I am back where I  first finished, fishing for a fourth.  Is it among all the dog-eared and bookmarked projects? The books, the magazines, the garden, the Olympics on tv? The laundry, the groceries, the car tune-up?

And what is that noise outside anyway and when will the tomatoes fruit?

8 Comments

Nice photo. Not what a writer wants to hear, but . . .

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Sounds like my house, Indira. I had to let my New Yorker subscription drop, “until I can catch up,” I told myself, with it and four other subscriptions I also let drop (very guiltily, I might add). But the New Yorker keeps coming anyway. Something haywire in Podunk, or wherever their subscription dept. is, so I’m skimming off the top instead of reading the growing stack beneath. Also sounds like my writing life. Took me 10 years to finish my second book, and it won’t be published until 12 years from the day I began it. What happened to all that time?

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