Of Mice and M&M’s


I’d like to share some observations about the writing life. More specifically, my own life as an author.

Some of what I tell you might be considered strange. You might even find parts of my story funny. Regardless, please reserve judgment and allow me to pull back the moth-infested, dusty curtains so you may glimpse behind my madness.

Back and butt.

Sitting in the same chair each day for ten to twelve hours is a major source of soreness, particularly in my back and my ample rump. Using special lumbar cushions and expensive ergonomic chairs only delays the daily onset of pain. I typically begin the day with one extra support apparatus. However, I add cushions to the chair throughout the day. By evening, I am piled high above the table and struggle to climb out of the chair, like a small child in one of thoseĀ foam ball pits.

Royal flush.

I forget to use the bathroom as I lose myself in writing or marketing. Until the kids come home from school. Then it becomes a three-person royal rumble to see who gets to use the facilities first. Bodies are flung down the staircase, punches are thrown, and two of us have to pound on the door as we wait impatiently for our turns. “Are you done yet?”

Mouse traps.

Deeply ensconced in my stories, I have given up any regular feeding schedules. Like a mouse, I’ll scurry along the cabinets in the kitchen to seek out a quick morsel. I burrow in between boxes of this and bags of that. I usually snap off a piece of cheese before running back to the safety of my laptop. My wife always manages to find my droppings on the back of the shelves.

Watering the plants.

Fluids are vital to my daily practice. Water interspersed with coffee gives my leaves a healthy sheen. However, I don’t prefer classical music or being spoken to in a loving voice. I thrive with minimal daylight and healthy doses of true Norwegian Black Metal. Ah, I feel my roots growing stronger.

Peanut or plain?

Such a silly question. PEANUTS, of course. Eating plain M&Ms is like biting into a jelly donut with nothing inside. Am I right?

What’s that smell?

It has been pointed out to me, on more than one occasion, that daily bathing rituals are a custom of America. My response is, whatever became of the Saturday night bath? If I have to work in a fifteen minute shower every day then my writing schedule will be drastically altered. Besides, it’s not like I sweat when I sit still. Helpful hint: You can find lots of sneaky places to hide air fresheners.

Writing can be a glamorous life when you get interviewed on network television or in a nationally distributed magazine. But the day-to-day life of writing is far from glamorous. And this is the side I prefer to dwell in.

So, hopefully I can land that HUGE reality T.V. pitch I recently made. Multiple camera angles of me, writing, all day long, eating peanut M&Ms, drinking coffee and water, sneaking nibbles of snacks…NAKED as a jaybird.

It’s strange they haven’t called me back yet. I’m sure they are just working up the numbers, how many zeroes to add to the fat check they are going to pay me. I’m going to play it cool while I wait. In the meantime, I’m going to get back to doing what I do best.