It’s not the first time I’ve been asked this. I get asked this more than anything else, but it never gets easier.
I try not to show it, my anxiety, as I say, “All of my life.”
“Well, let me tell you this much,” she says with a look of surprise, before winking, “I don’t detect any accent.”
This too, I’m told all the time. Somewhere between the relief and paranoia, I mutter my thanks.
That’s what her license plate says, but in all caps.
Everybody has a pet name and hers is maus.
I never ask her about her german pet name, even though it’s on her license plate. I’d rather not go there. Things are hyped up as it is. There’s no need to galvanize any more energy to the fact by probing into something as privy as a pet name. With anybody else, it would mean nothing, but it’s different with sky, because she dresses in stockings and miniskirts in the snow.
“In other words,” I go, “she’s unparagoned.”
And my dentist goes, “She sounds high-maintenance.”
“Anyway,” I go, “she’s married.”
And my dentist goes, “Her husband must be exhausted.”
We embrace goodbye, before I hand her the bag of Ketchup Garden, and she gets inside her car. The headlights flash and the window rolls down, and sky goes, “If I don’t hear back from you by christmas, then merry christmas.”
“And if I don’t hear back from you by christmas,” I go, “then merry christmas.”
And she pulls ahead, turning away her license plate, pixelating into the night.
I know I’m a better writer than 100% of writers out there.
My self-hate stems from the fact I can still be better.
As per my over-analytical ways, I’ve lost all comprehension of what it means to be a horrible writer.
How do you define a bad writer?
And who is the worse writer?
Someone who writes badly or someone who nobody reads?
Perhaps a bad writer is someone who writes badly and nobody reads… and isn’t before their time.