Writing a book.

The first draft is the messy haired, skewed pajama pants and oversized tee shirt version, trying to get the coffee maker going but the dogs are staring at her waiting to be let outside or fed, she can’t remember which one she has already done. And she has to pee.

The second draft is the together-enough version. She has on shoes and her socks don’t match but it’s okay because she’s just focused on running errands she should have taken care of yesterday. She could have done it faster but she got distracted during an interesting podcast and missed her turn, and ended up driving the wrong way down a one way. When she pulled over and stepped out of the car to take a deep breath, she locked the keys in the car and had to call a locksmith.

The third-ish draft is pacing in the kitchen with four hours left in the day. She realized the one thing she forgot to do earlier, but doesn’t feel like getting back in the car, and is debating whether it is absolutely essential to her life. She decides it’s not. She feels drawn to stay home, and tidy up, or tackle the laundry, or god help her, finally organize the stack of books making her staircase a hazard. Indecision and the temptation of laziness will plague her. Instead she’ll eat a jar of dill pickles, drink a beer and, drawing from the last of her reserves, (possibly, she’ll flip a coin) and get to work. (The coin’s alternate timeline will run rampant in the shadows of her mind.)

The last draft is feeling the mentally healthy grip of good enough. Besides, nothing and no one will ever be perfect. To quote Jo Bennett, “well, I mean, if you can put your name on this day and be proud of the amount of work you’ve done, then by all means, you should toddle on home.” When the final draft is done, the sun has moved on to some other side of the earth, she’s fed and noticing the stiffness in her shoulders and neck. She’s made it. She can lay down in bed, put on a mindless movie, prop the pillows up just right and succumb to the good kind of sleep. Today will soon be yesterday and there’s not a damn thing she can do about it.


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