Who Are Your Writing Companions?
Looking at those two deck chairs, which one is mine, and which one is reserved for my writing companion, my dog, Seamus?
Last week I spent Monday through Friday at my nephew’s cottage at Lake St. James. (It’s a tough life, the life of a writer.) It was just what I needed to kick start my latest novel (the one I’ve been trying to work on since April). By the end of the week, I had over 26,000 words, well on my way. I had written a number of major scenes and worked through a lot of plot. Now I need to finish, beef up the minor characters and flesh out the plot line. No small task.
Last summer when I went to my brother’s to write, I ran into a problem with Seamus. Seamus is a pack animal. He likes to be close to his pack, which on most days is me. At home I usually sit with my laptop on the couch with him lying next to me, or outside on my swing which has ample room for both of us.
If I sit at the table and write, Seamus whines and bangs his head on my leg till I give up and go to the couch.
The same dynamic took place at the cottage. I would sit on the deck only to be pestered till I went inside and sat on a couch, which isn’t a terrible thing since I can still look out the sliding doors at the lake, but it is not my preferred place to write. Left to myself, I can sit for hours, sipping coffee, notebook in my lap, pen in hand, staring out at the lake (again, it’s a tough life). But I wasn’t left to myself.
This year I pulled my chair up to the lounge chair and put cushions out for both of us. Seamus climbed up and napped, leaving me to my writing.
So, if you guessed the lounge chair was Seamus’ – you were right.
And let’s not forget my other four-legged writing companion, Montana, the fat cat. At nineteen years, she is skinnier than she has ever been. We know her time is limited. What’s amazing is that, this cat, who terrorized my sons-in-law with her meanness and who took three years of daily treats before she would allow my husband to touch her, has mellowed. She comes out of her lair and talks to guests and even allows them to pet her. Something she never did before this. Something I never expected to happen.
My cat is teaching me about aging. You are never too old to change.
And finally, my best writing companion, God’s spirit which, like the wind, comes when and where it will!
Do you have writing companions? I would love to hear about them.