The Foreseeable Future

I have no plans about my future. Some days I daydream about living The Dream—you know, teaching Literature in university while working on my manuscript (possibly the second one) during my free time. The Dream has been on my mind for a long time, but on how I could actually start on it is another matter altogether that continues to frustrate me.

I have thought various alternative scenarios that would allow me to do at least some writing, but with all the worries that I need to think about first, I can’t channel my creative side long enough to write a single word down (this blog post not counting).

Instead, I read. I read a lot of chick lit. I read textbooks about literary criticism and public speaking and cookbooks, and old favorites such as Catcher in the Rye. I read Shakespeare’s comedies, and Hamlet (because it’s the only tragedy of his I really love—Romeo and Juliet is overrated). And I read poetry and recite, “Do I dare? Do I dare disturb the universe?” and “There will be time. There will be time,” whenever I find myself in a rut, as if somehow I could convince myself that I do dare and there will be time. And whenever I say, “My heart aches and a drowsy numbness pains my sense as though of hemlock I had drunk…” I mean it. Poetry reveals another dimension in me—in all of us, really—that no other type or form of literature ever can.

I wander in different versions of reality found in literature because I can barely deal with my own. It’s easy for me to call Rachel spineless and whiny because she will not hear me and because I know, eventually near the end of the book, she will get the guy. But if I call myself spineless and whiny—which I can sometimes be—it stops there. It is not some complication in the narrative that will eventually get cleared later on, and there is no guarantee that I will have this grand epiphany about Life.

I know I need to eventually wake up from the trance I’m in. I need to stop wishing I lived in books instead of here. And I need to think about the Foreseeable Future and what to do about it.