I’m a relatively mean, negative person at times, but I’ve never been mad at a baby before they’re even born. I mean, I’ve felt the same thing everyone feels when you’re on an airplane or in a movie and a child is crying, but that anger gets quiet when I realize that me being annoyed about a loud noise nearby is probably nothing compared to what the parent who is actively trying to soothe that baby is feeling. I imagine it’s something akin to the panic you feel when in a meeting at work or a fancy restaurant or a really somber bathroom and then your phone starts ringing in your bag and you can’t get to it but everything you do seems to make it louder. And then you realize it’s an alarm you set to remind you to pay your bills, so you end up crying in the bathroom too…
That’s just how I imagine it. I don’t have kids, and it’s going to be a hot minute or two before I do. I’ve never been mad at a baby before they’re born. I cannot say the same for every big project I’ve ever written. Including the one I started yesterday. When I got the idea for it, I was excited. When I made the first version of the outline, that excitement had turned to a kind of nervous happy energy that told me I could do this and it wouldn’t be that hard. When I slept on it for a while, I woke up and remembered what it was like the last time I did this. I’ve written a shitty book before. Every part of it was awful, the process, the product, and the swampy coffee breath of the author by the end.
As I think more about what this project could be and how much work it would require to do it, I get annoyed. Weirdly, though, that annoyance isn’t actually discouraging. I’ve been thinking about it all morning and doing a bit more writing on it, and I’m starting to see this project less like a book and more like an Ikea dresser with as many drawers as I have individual socks. It’s going to be complicated doing this, and I’m going to fuck up, and it’s going to take fucking forever, but there is a way it needs to turn out, and the only way I’ll like it or be proud of it or use it to store my socks is if it has everything I need it to.
So I guess I’m going to get back to it. This has been a half hour break for me to whine.