This is the fifth in a series of posts in which I share thoughts on a book that has inspired me over the years.
One day last week I had a long airport layover. It was the end of a long day so when I went into Hudson’s bookstore, I was looking for the sort of book that was not work-related and would be hard to put down. Stephen King is a safe bet on both counts, so I picked up his new book Billy Summers.
There is a well-known Zen saying that when the student is ready, the teacher appears. I sometimes find that teachers appear from out of the most unlikely places, whether I am ready for their lessons or not.
When I got to the passage cited here, it was like being hit in the head with a brick. Because I do have a half-finished book sitting in my desk drawer. The subject of that book is much more important today than it was when I started working on it BC (remember when BC stood for something other than Before Covid?). And the manuscript is now sitting unfinished in my desk drawer precisely for the reasons that Stephen King slipped into this novel – the one I thought would be non-work-related light airplane reading.
Sometimes the teacher sneaks up on you unawares. It behooves you to pay attention when that happens.
I have a fair bit of travel coming up over the next several months. What Stephen King, through the voice of Billy Summers, is telling me to do is forget about light reading and work on the heavy writing.
How about you? What projects – writing or otherwise – have you set aside because the work is too heavy, or because the times are too heavy? What will motivate you to open the drawer and put it back on your front burner?
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