I love to say I have writer’s block, because that implies I’m a writer. It also excuses the years in which writing was absent from my life altogether.
Come to think of it, I developed writer’s block at a very young age, perhaps as young as four, which I believe qualifies me as a child protégé.
With few exceptions, this block accompanied me through most of adolescence and well into the teen-aged years. I did become a poet at age 16, and continued on with no encouragement at all, demonstrating my great strength of character. These early poems also show tremendous focus, as all were about boys.
The muse of writer’s block paid me another long visit, this happened after college. It sat on my shoulder while I wrote technical and corporate manuals. While I wrote checks. With a block this lengthy and impenetrable, I see myself joining Dickens on the prolific spectrum, with him on the teeter, me on the totter.
So the twenty novels I didn’t write dealt with, of course, the eternal issues. Love in the time of swine flu; the struggle of man to find meaning and morality in a godless universe.
I was going to say the benign indifference of the universe, but Camus already gobbled up that phrase. Ever notice how all the good phrases are gone? “..borne back ceaselessly into the past.” I could have written that. Unfortunately, writers are a greedy lot, especially the dead ones, using up all the resources without a thought for how we’re supposed to write a whole book with the meager combinations that remain. With the scraps they left behind.