Daily Archives: Thursday, 13 February 2014

FFF 13: Don’t stop your pen

The following script was recently discovered scratched in the rock of a lost cave in the wilds of Soviet Russia. Its origin continues to baffle scientists and anthropologists.

The only rule is “Don’t stop your pen”—do you know how hard it is to write for a full ten minutes? It’s like trying to meditate for a full ten minutes; really meditate, I mean not just sit there and your mind wander. You have to consciously think about nothing and every time you stray—that is, every time you think of something that’s not nothing—you have to start all over from the beginning as if you have the opposite of a blank slate.

Writing for ten minutes is like picking up after a small child. Does the mess ever end? Not likely. And when I have this head-cold-turned-sore-throat-and-cough, I have to avoid breathing on anyone else—not like that really helps that much anyway. So I can’t just think about what I want to think about, I have to keep my mind alert for any chance I might give the dreaded cough to someone sitting close by.

I can’t lose myself in the words and lose track of time (I only have ten minutes anyway) because suddenly someone is snapping his fingers in front of my face and saying, “Hey, it’s been ten minutes. Aren’t you done yet?” and I say, “I’m a writer.”

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This post is part of Flash Fiction February.