Oh, by the way …

… I just finished the first draft of a new book. Ha! You didn’t even know I was writing one, did you? It’s something of a travel memoir of my old hitchhiking days, mixing prose with poetry in the tradition of Basho’s haibun books. It’s called Dosojin & Tonic or Thanks for the Ride, Clyde or The Rise and Fall of Miscellaneous Jones & the Vagabond Angels: Neo-Haibun from the Travel-worn Satchel of a Weather-exposed Skeleton with the 12 Bars Blues.

I wrote the whole thing on the newest typing horse in my stable, a mid-morning-sky-blue Royal Mariner that came from a local antique shop. It gallops smoother than my Remington Streamliner and faster than my Underwood. Like other great machines, it also kills fascists. I live in a town that has not one, but two stores that stock typewriter ribbon.

I’ve made several false starts with this book, each sputtering out after a few pages. The problem was using the wrong tool for the job. I just can’t write on a computer. It’s too easy to open the file of a different project every time the one I’m working on seems to not be flowing. Pretty soon, I’ve got windows open for several poems, a play, an essay and the book. Focus is lost and I’m no longer writing anything. So I check e-mail and Facebook, play chess and think about posting something to my website.

With a manual typewriter, there’s no escaping the page in front of you. It will wait, patiently and silently, forever. I stare back for awhile, and then begin typing again.

This morning, I wrote the final words. Now it’s time for breakfast, another cup of coffee, and then, to begin the first of many revisions.

Just thought you might like to know.

About marcbeaudin

Poems, plays, books, roads, trails.
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