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Writing, widely known as the waterboard of vocations, is doing some damage. Instead of leaving me uplifted with a satisfying sense of accomplishment it beats up the inside of my mind like a hockey puck – “Bad word, that’s just plain stupid, nobody will ever read this, what a waste of time, go do something, clean your closet, at least check your email, for God’s sake, your’re a damn mess, and quit chewing on that skin peeling off the side of your thumb”.

At first, see, I thought it was just me. I really believed that I was the problem, that I was personally blocking my own path to success or at least to finshing something. I’ve even written about this before.

But I was wrong. It isn’t me. It’s Writing itself that’s evil. There’s something about Writing that conjures up all sorts of hell. Icthonic, tartarean hell. It’s like I’ve swallowed my second grade teacher whole and she’s inside churning up my stomach and pinching me all over again. It’s clear that just like her, Writing hates me, and for no good reason.

You know, usually I like a good fight. I especially relish beating the shit out of someone who deserves it. But this bully, this Writing personna, is a slippery son of a bitch. He stays out of sight, and then out of nowhere swoops in to sling despair around. For instance, last Friday I was working, inspired, on a critical conversation in my novelita, secrets were spilling out, details were bubbling to the surface and this was crucial, crucial, to the plot.  Yes, I was happily immersed in my tale when all of a sudden I am consumed by the hot, nasty breath of Satan, completely eaten up with angst, my brain beaten, cudgeled beyond recognition. Left for dead. Good for nothing but online shopping. (Did you know Christian Dior lip pencils qualify for Amazon Prime? They were delivered the next day. So great!)

Clearly, Writing gets away with this mischief by being in cahoots with an evil world. It used to be that patronage and the arts were friends, practically soul mates. Not anymore. Now patronage has shapeshifted into its ugly twin sister- patronizing, “Oh, you’re writing a novel. That is just so neat.” That caterwaul they hear next is coming out of me, “Hell, it’s not neat, it’s hell, do you hear me? Writing is hell and it really is hell because Writing-is-hell!”

Oh my, what a struggle. But maybe there is comfort, a twisted, masochistic warmth, in Writing. Spending time with my most brutal critic has to, just has to, make me better. Better in a schizophrenic, murderous way.