It happens every once and a while. He writes away in his electronic journal, named El-Jo, and a story creeps in and takes over. It then gets cut and pasted into its own file, is given a title, and edited. Later maybe, it gets posted on his blog or submitted to a literary mag, or entered into a competition.
It’s a good habit this writing in a journal first thing in the morning, if there isn’t some other story currently under construction. Don’t look at the internet before doing this, the internet can induce mighty buzzes of anger – which only bring on venting and raving and wasting buckets of time. And what good is that?
There is a bird outside. He’s heard it before. A summer bird. That’s it, fig bird. He pictures its olive plumage and red beak.
His wireless keyboard is dusty and dirty, but how do you clean these things? No, don’t Google that. Not now anyway.
That’s right, there are some bills needing to be paid today. He sets an alarm on his phone to remind him to do it later. Later, after the morning writing session.
He hears a garbage truck and remembers he hasn’t put the bins out yet. Should it be done now in case it comes down the street earlier than usual?
He goes outside and unknowingly steps with his left foot onto one end of a fallen twig from the paper bark tree above. Like an unbalanced see-saw, the other end of the twig flicks up into the air and stabs his right foot as he steps forward. His foot is bleeding, not badly. At least the smelly red garbage bin is out. He goes back to his computer and El-Jo.
He journals in third person, an attempt to get out of his own head and into the never-never world of story which is full of fictional characters waiting to be plucked out of the aether and laid down faithfully and magically onto the page. He likes this world. He gets into the zone when he enters into its mysterious timeless dimension.
Fingers go on automatic pilot. Sentences form, clumsy at first. Random adjectives attach to nouns, some are kept, others deleted. The fig bird and the garbage truck fade out. The bills and their due dates are nowhere to be found in his writing mind. The slight throb in his right foot is washed away by a splash of dopamine. He could be anywhere, in any era, of any gender, race, or sexual preference. Anything could happen.
Nothing else matters, for the moment, on this morning.