The Total Writer
If you picture me carrying a tray of beers with exclamation points and various other top row keyboard symbols exuding from my neck and lower back Friday night, you’ll have a decent image of how I spent that ten hours.
You see, gentle viewers, I was in a car accident in April of 2010, and it tore a bunch of ligaments along the left side of my neck, which has incidentally left me with a bit of pain. Most of the time it’s okay, but Friday night, it was almost unbearable. I carry trays in my left hand because my right hand (which is my mostly dominant hand) has a small deformity that makes me unable to balance a tray. (My pinky is stuck at a 90 degree angle at the center joint.) However, carrying trays left-handed puts a lot of stress on the nerves and muscles that run between my left hand and the left side of my spine.
So what does this have to do with writing?
Well, for starters, I hit the P key with my right ring finger and type with nine fingers instead of ten. Wah! Poor me. (Just kidding. I’m fine. Though my typing teacher blew a few gaskets back in the day. “You use your pinky to type P!!!!!” “Ms. S, I can’t straighten it out to hit the letter.” “…….”)
I’ve been in a lot of pain lately. I’ve also gained a few pounds. While I get a moderate amount of exercise at work (walking constantly for 10 hours is a nice workout), I haven’t been eating well, and I haven’t been sleeping well, either.
Writing is a sedentary task. I’ve yet to discover a writer who can manage to type and treadmill at the same time, though I assume there’s one such inventive soul out there.
It seems sometimes that I do one or the other. I exercise or I write. I don’t think I like that combination.
Good gods and muffins, Emmie, what does this have to do with writing?
Well, gentle viewers, I will come to the point. I believe that when our bodies are healthy, our minds work better. I believe this because when I do work out regularly, I sleep better. I feel better. I have more energy, more ideas, more creative mana to expend. The belt around the holiday belly is this — I don’t have a ton of time.
You see what I did there? I made an excuse.
I know that if I start working out again, I will feel better, want healthier food, and generally become a happier, shinier person. I know it will take away a bit of time from my writing, but I have a hunch that it will result in increased productivity. Besides, if I ever want to be a medieval bada$$ like Keira Knightly in King Arthur, I need the muscles to hold my swords.
Which brings me to another topic of this post: hobbies.
Writing is a solitary gig. It can be a lonely road, like Billie and his boulevard of broken dreams. Even though I am a self-professed introvert who ironically holds a job that involves being surrounded by people and interacting with them, I tend to go straight home and stay there, and I dislike having to venture out on my days off. I have wanted to learn how to sword fight for a very long time, and I happened across two lovely gingers at the Maryland Renaissance Festival who do just that — they work at a local gig called Medieval Madness, and they said I could join them there.
Oh, gentle viewers, how I long to. The problem is, of course and as ever, time. Right now, I work six nights a week, and I would need to have three of those free to do it. So right now, it’s just not feasible. However, I know part of becoming my own total writer is learning the things I want to learn: broadswords, Gaelic, Welsh, Irish dance. In the future, I’ll figure that part out. For now, it’s baby steps and dumbbells. I’m off to work out.
What things make you a total writer? What is lacking in your life? What, if any of it, do you make excuses for?
I’ll leave you with a picture of a sword I want. 🙂