“I hardly write, now.”
That’s scary. It’s petrifying, it’s my worse nightmare come alive and into the living, natural world, sinking its claws into me. I miss the smooth, curving undersides of Comic Sans as you slip into Times New Roman, the sharp-lettered alphabet pinching into my skin.
“I hardly write.”
No, you can’t do this. You were the person who got me a typewriter, who got me a job as the reporter for that one lousy newspaper back in ’70s Town Jupiter; you were the one who flicked reams of paper at me and demanded I put my thoughts to paper. I can’t lose the person who taught me what love is – that is, my love for the written word – to leave this chapter unfinished.
You hardly try. I can feel it, for I bug you to write everyday, be it on your Dell laptop, “I don’t mind you tapping so loudly in the middle of the damn night”, I massage your fingers, numb and inflexible from disuse, with great care, to allow you no excuses for lack of writing. You aren’t even trying to write, even short pieces or long prose, flash fiction or flashy-worded poetry. I’m telling you to try but you aren’t trying. You’re hardly there whenever I talk to you about my love – our love – for writing, our appreciation for Sputnik Sweetheart and Making Love To Scrabble Tiles. I don’t think I deserve such a lacklustre response when last time, you could hardly stop talking about those books for twenty-four hours.
It’s not about you. You had to understand, it’s always been about everyone else. Everyone but yourself; the world, the writing, the word before you. You come second to the smell of parchment paper and inky keys, you come third to cups of tea accompanying manuscripts, you come last to three-am writing urges, okay? Do you understand? You don’t have to dot your ‘i’, for I’ll dot the last sentence of your novel for you – I’ll finish the tale for you once and for all, and slam the book shut on your face.
Then I’ll let people read you from cover to cover. I hope your pages crinkle and yellow, and that readers comment in critical awful-ness, not critical acclaim. I’ll withhold my comments. You withhold your anguish, but why would you? The world wouldn’t care, unless you’re some famous bloke, or something.