Global Witness




When you write, who is watching you?

When I am trying to write some days or nights, I feel like I’m all alone. I have come to realize at those times I don’t seem to have the right feeling about my words jelling together. I have gone blank trying to complete many ideas that I start out with. I’ll think about the next line but nothing is there. We need a witness, proofreading in our minds before those thoughts become text. That must be the reason I feel so unproductive on those lonely days. It seems like the harder you try, the ideas that you think you want, just don’t come together. They don’t feel right, it doesn’t look right and surely doesn’t sound right when you read it back.

I have never thought about it that much before. When I am writing and ideas seem to be tumbling and bouncing out of my mind at a fairly rapid pace I don’t have that lonely feeling. Many times I feel the presence of a long-lost loved one as if they are there coaching me on what I’m supposed to write. A favorite aunt from a long ago might be looking over my shoulder and prompting my words from her experience. Writing is like porridge it needs to be shared while it is still hot. I have found editing can still work after it is cold but best done warm. If you wait to edit and then change the ingredients you might have chop suey for the trash.

I plan to invite a great uncle of mine over for coffee. His old ink pen became well known to many newspaper editors 100 years ago. If there was something that he disagreed with in their newspapers he was the first letter to the editor. I think I may have him hang around the room as a witness more often while I’m trying to do my writing and see how it works out. I do know he will be very surprised by the writing methods that I use. He had only his small desk, a bottle of ink, his pen, an ink blotter, a small tablet and a few envelopes and 1 cent stamps.

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