The Writer
Bev Vines-Haines
Sammi Amson’s rituals drove her crazy.  Literally.  Every evening she planned her next day’s writing schedule.  She scribbled short outlines and checked the battery level on her mouse.

She pictured the words that would fly from the tips of her fingers and appear on her monitor.  She remembered when it had all happened on an IBM Selectric, how difficult edits had been.  How grueling.  Back then she had sharpened pencils, straightened the edges of her yellow legal pads and placed large Art Gum erasers alongside the tablets.  Computers were easier.

Every night her plots and scenes and characters thrashed wildly through her dreams, waking her with a start, keeping her on the jittery side of REM sleep.  More times than she could count she felt compelled to crawl out from beneath her covers and hurry shivering to the computer with fresh ideas and brilliant lines.  She always resisted, burrowing deeper into her fantasies of appearing on Jay Leno’s show and writing the screen plays for her soon famous stories.

Mornings were fresh pages of promise as she poured a large mug of coffee and spread peanut butter on hot toasted bread.  She could see the computer from her kitchen table, could feel the tension in her upper arms as she imagined a long and dazzling day of creating.  The keyboard winked at her, inviting the process to begin.

Not yet.

First she would check her email and Facebook, watch the Today Show for new trends and concepts and fuel her mind with current events and sharp political acumen.  A dated writer’s voice was lost in the howling and competitive marketplace. 

By 11:00 am she ignored the computer.  The office seemed hostile and judgmental as she allowed the human condition to pummel her mind.  Judge Judy, growing ever more antagonistic toward females, captivated her attention.  Did all aging women side with males.  Was the penis really the ultimate badge of power and trust? 

Sammi began to shout at the television, screaming at the blind injustice on the screen.

She watched Hoarders.  How did someone reach such depths of despair?  And why oh why did those therapists aid and abet that pitiful behavior?  Would they ask pedophiles to taper off, choose carefully which victims they would give up?  No!  Lock hoarders away long enough to shovel that junk out of their hovels!  

Dr. Phil’s was a voice of reason.  Until he wrote his last book and pitched it relentlessly on every show.  She stood up, disgusted with television.

Turning to her computer, she noticed it was dark outside.  She fussed, making sure everything was set for her writing day tomorrow.

Satisfied, Sammi Amson shuffled off to bed.

First published: May, 2013
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