Of all the afflictions a writer might hope to avoid, ‘memory like a sieve’ must rank near the top. I have a tough job with names (even have to run through the register when addressing one of my own kids), and book titles too. This makes it hard to share/recommend/enthuse about a good read.
And it’s no bloody fun when you’re trying to track your own work.
I do a lot of my writing in my head. Driving to work and home again. Zoning out in meetings so tedious I want to open a vein. Even sitting here blogging right now. One part of my mind is always preoccupied with the story I’m working on. Problem is, the minute I hit the computer, it all seeps away, can’t even find the thread to tie a knot in it, half the time.
Carry a notebook, you might advise. Ah, no thanks. I already have three points on my licence (for doing 34mph—yup, still pissed off cos I forgot to send off the fine and got hit for £230 rather than the original £60), and have you ever noticed how in a meeting, your closest neighbours are always checking out what notes you’re taking. Besides, I’ve tried scraps of paper and lose them every time only to come across them months later, to wonder WTF.
Yet I plod on, always back-reading what I’ve already written (which takes hours) in the hope that something will stick for good or better still trigger some random thoughts from earlier on. Why? Cos that’s another affliction of mine, a cussed stubbornness not to yield any ground.
Yes this all makes me a difficult person to live with but I do have one saving grace, I value my friends, and damn straight, I never forget them.
Got any afflictions you want to share?