You are only interested in writing if you can plug into your mind as if you’re dreaming.
Why would you want to write if it wasn’t fun?
But you do?
I have to.
Why do you have to?
Because I’m a writer.
Then what do you write about?
I don’t know. Stuff. I don’t know.
You don’t know. You just make it up.
Like I said, I’m a writer.
Right. Writers write.
But you don’t enjoy it?
Sometimes you enjoy it.
When it flows.
When it flows as if it were a dream. So you like to write daydreams.
Yeah, I guess so. I like to write daydreams.
But doesn’t being a daydreamer make you a shlep in the world?
Yes, unless you are published then you are a god.
I see. Tell me.
No, let me just ask you a question. If you could do something other than write what would it be?
I don’t know. A baseball player I guess.
Then why don’t you become a baseball player?
Bad knee. Too old. Suck at the game.
I was going to say fireman but you would know that I’m just goofing around.
Let me see. What would I want to do if I wasn’t a writer which isn’t all fun and games. They asked Eliot if living the life of a poet was worth the hassle and he simply said “no.”
So you don’t want to be a writer.
What would you want to be.
Something that would allow me to make a lot of money easily and move to a beach and just smoke pot.
The dream world again.
So you want to be a writer.
It seems more significant than painting or photography. But you can’t make money at it, just like those others. You have to sell yourself out. You have to go into advertising, basically, sell shit for other people. Be a part of the problem.
So you see the way that society is as part of the problem.
Yeah, pretty much. This is what the old family and friends don’t understand. Why I don’t even attempt to enter that world, but for me entering that world is like selling out and I don’t have a lot of energy in that direction. So I say I want to write, although it is often pure pain as you write and also take into account the fact that some 19 year old Brown sophomore will be judging you and deciding your work’s fate. Perhaps that graduate hasn’t yet had the experience necessary to judge it properly. So we get an aging down of everything we read. Everything must be written to fit this fucking mold of the reader being a fucking baby.
You’re damned right I’m angry.
So what do you do?
I don’t know. I deal with my anger, but my writing will never change the facts of the world.
Well, let me think.
No, let me ask you another question.
How old are you?
You have no loved one in your life.
I’m a writer.
Would you like one?
I also dribble when I pee so sometimes I stink.
You could go to the doctor.
Can’t afford it. I’m a writer.
Don’t you send your stuff out?
Rarely. Can’t afford the postage and printing costs.
So are you a writer?
Yes. I’ve written a lot.
Sounds like you might be afraid of rejection.
Not afraid. Disgusted.
And this makes you come down on yourself like you’re just a sore loser.
How did you know that?
Just a guess. That’s what you pay me for.
Ten bucks an hour on a sliding scale.
You pay me. I get paid. Trust me.
Now I’m part of the problem.
So it goes back and forth. You’re part of the problem sometimes and they’re part of the problem sometimes.
Which makes you ambivalent.
I never understood that word.
You don’t care.
Right. I don’t care. Like I said, I just want to go to the beach and smoke pot.
Then why don’t you?
Can’t afford it.
Just go and see what happens. You’ll find a job. Just go and smoke pot. But then you would have to quit writing and that seems important to you even though you act like it isn’t.
It may be. It may not be. I think I chose the profession as a teenager so it doesn’t really matter. A vocation of the mind isn’t really a good idea. Best to do something really technical or where you use your hands. Make sure that everybody understands it and most importantly make sure that the service is wanted. Dream professions are highly competitive. You have to be superman. I’m not superman any more.
Tell me about superman.
He flies around and wears a cape.
No, your version of superman.
He knows things. He doesn’t feel pain. He doesn’t rebel against the world and cripple himself.
You do that?
All the time.
Yeah, I guess.
What happened to you?
I always look for similes and I can never find any. They told me in literature school that you should look for similes for your writing to be good. I’ve never been able to and it’s always flustered me as a writer. So I just started writing what I wanted to write. No similes or just bad ones and I accept it. I’m a bad writer.
Define a bad writer.
A bad writer is someone who doesn’t put in a lot of description or similes but just writes like he’s thinking a lot. That’s me. Nothing ever happens either. There’s no plot. Just interiority. Lots of interiority.
You’re an introvert?
Do you like being an introvert?
Imagine that every thought that you think has to be thought over and over again, but not in a few seconds but over several years. It takes you years to learn something an extrovert takes for granted from the beginning. Being an introvert is like a curse.
So being an introvert is what happened to you?
What happened to you?
That’s hard to say.
It seems everything has happened to me and it’s all just added up. You sort of go with it because that’s the way it is.
Name one thing.
Can’t think of any I want to go into.
The stories are too long. I’m a writer, remember?
My will to think.
What do you do?
Is this good?
I figure it’s good for my story writing possibilities.
Do you really want to cash in on your pain?
Figure maybe it will help me escape the pain to have money.
So you make a living by lying down and thinking about your pain?
No I make a living by writing about it. I figure I’m just trying to figure it out. But I don’t send anything out so I don’t make any money at all. I guess I’m just keeping hope alive that’s all.
When does it end?
When I come up for air?
What’s going to make you do that?
I don’t know. Move away.
Where would you go.
Because there are literary people there and then maybe I won’t feel so alone.
Why does everybody have to be literary?
They don’t, but otherwise they’re sexual and monetary.
Aren’t you sexual and monetary?
No, because I’m literary. We lose the sexual part without the monetary after awhile and of course we never have the monetary. It’s failure upon failure as a human being, but what are you going to do? Stay in shape and you’ll still be part of the pack for a little while anyway.
What do you mean?
What I mean is that we are animals in a pack. We have as much desire to bolster the weak in this pack as do animals in theirs. We are all going to get old so we’re all doomed to be tossed out of the pack. We may not be killed but we will be abandoned. That’s why we have families, because we know that our own offspring, at least, cannot throw us over a cliff. This is not true for people not our direct family. It’s a ruthless system really that if true and there is a God would mean that this God is a very ruthless God.
But isn’t God just the way that it is. What is is God?
I guess so. It’s seeming to be that way all the time, but you’ve got to admit that your admiration for this God has to go down the more you realize this plan.
So what do you do?
I grow old just like the rest of them. I try to put myself into a situation that will allow me freedom to move around, preferentially in nature, since that is the only way that you will be allowed to remain in the pack. People want only strength. They will do their best to destroy you if you attempt to foist philosophy or contemplation their way as strength. No, strength is in the arm and the loins and that’s it. Completely.
And in youth.
Yes, in youth. You can contemplate in youth because it adds to your aura of strength. Beauty is strength. Beauty is health. Health is strength.