• Bridge Ladies

    Bridge Ladies When I set out to learn about my mother's bridge club, the Jewish octogenarians behind the matching outfits and accessories, I never expected to fall in love with them. This is the story of the ladies, their game, their gen, and the ragged path that led me back to my mother.
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You Are My Candy Girl

Head writing. I started another brilliant short story today while walking my dog. In my mind’s eye, it was in The New Yorker Font. The dialogue, if I do say so, was spectacular. Crisp and funny and surprising.  My first sentence was sublime. And the whole thing just flowed. The further I got, on my walk, the more I wished for a pen to write it all down. It was that good. By the time I got home, it was gone.

Is head writing by definition delusional? Or just me?

11 Responses

  1. Years later, I’m still regretting that I didn’t pull over to the side of the highway and jot down the melody and lyrics to the song I had head wrote/composed and sung while dodging traffic. That Grammy would have looked so nice on my piano.

    Let’s hope your short story returns in tonight’s dream.

  2. In college I wrote a fabulous poem. I woke up and told my boyfriend ‘ Listen to this. ‘ Come under the shelter of the red rock. ‘.
    He said sweetly. ‘ yes it’s a great poem. TS Eliot already wrote it. “

  3. I once drove my kid all the way to work, bypassing her school, because two of my characters were having a snarkfest between my ears and I forgot she was in her carseat…

    Luckily, she called me on it as I pulled into the parking lot. I delivered her and returned to work just in time to clock in and get a few notes down, though the voices in my head had long since joined forces to tell me what a crappy mother I was.

  4. I’ve had this happen in bed when I’m too tired to get up. It’s gone. But on dog walks, I’ve dictated into my phone and transcribed when I’ve gone home. Some of those flash have gone on to be published. Bring your phone.

  5. “Is head writing by definition delusional? Or just me?”

    It is neither. All writing is delusional, head, foot, and all points in between, and it is not just you.

    And any writer is going to have the experience you described — a beautiful piece of work comes whole into mind, but dissipates before it can be set down.

    I’m sure I’ve lost an entire book that way.

  6. It’s delusional and never looks as good in print as it does in your head, but the ideas are there, so there’s some kind of foundation to build your work upon.

    Although I usually forget to carry it (as also a camera), I do own a little voice recorder I have spoken into from time to time. Just try, though, to speak your words coherently as fast as your thoughts are flying by. People talk to themselves and gesture wildly all the time.

    It’s always worth it to meander around with a doggie on a leash, pausing constantly and wondering about just how good a sense of smell canines actually possess.

    Yesterday afternoon I saw a big paw print in soft mud. Possibly it was a large dog and the size was amplified and spread out in the squishy ground, but the bears are starting to come out of hibernation….

  7. I am especially brilliant in the car and unmatched just before sleep. Which means I miss my turn and forget my dreams.

  8. It’s not just you, but it’s definitely not me. I can’t even begin to think creatively without a pen and paper in front of me.

  9. Dear Betsy,
    It happens during a walk or when I’m on the edge of sleep. An idea or dialogue so incredible I know it will never escape me. Then…***poof*** it’s all gone.
    Loved this!!

  10. I have taken to doing voice memos on my phone (more for song lyrics but it is helpful). I do a lot of head writing of emails / texts to friends and then wonder why they haven’t responded.

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