Tuesday, February 7, 2023

The ratchet tightens


For advanced clerkmanifesto readers:

In the course of a decade of relentless, utterly faithful writing, I find a pattern emerges in which my writing tightens down, like a bolt being fastened by a wrench. And I must squeeze out the day's thought, grand and glorious or trivial as it may be, in the space of what tiny movement is left, which is ever less and less.

And then eventually I think:

Oh, I can simply put a new bolt in and there will be so much rotation. 

But are there any more holes?


The World is full of holes.

And to be honest, I am not sure what any of these bolts I've so carefully tightened down are holding together.

Okay, I'll elaborate.

Sometimes I think of writing things. Sometimes it is blog posts. Sometimes it is whole novels. But my ambition is always strangely the same: That I should be able to write without expending any effort whatsoever. 

But here is the enigmatic secret that every writer, every artist, knows:

Writing is good (or bad), hard work. Except in the moment that you are doing it, at which point it isn't anything like work at all.

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