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‘Writing for Serenity'
Baltimore, 7/30/2023
© 2023 James LaFond
JAN/17/24
June 25 2023
James,
The below was clipped from a post circa September 2015:
"Every day I have conversations with men who examine the same factors as I only to become enraged, irrational, sad, irritated.  There are only two things about my life that is uniformly different from the lives of these half dozen troubled fellows:
1. They do not fight.
2. They either do not write, or suffer from pretty severe writer’s block, meaning they are having a hard time using that serenity tool."
I support the fighting idea 100%, in a difficult time of my life, regular judo practice kept me sane, or at least under control.  For folks who can't fight due to injury or age, firearms require focus, practice, and provide a martial flavor.
I also have struggles with writing for personal purposes, although composing for work is not a problem.  Not sure why.
I suggest alternatives that require focus, but also develop skills. Sketching, drawing, various crafts, woodworking, gardening, all come highly recommended by their practioners. 
Thanks,
Don Quotays
Sir, lately, it being 9 weeks since I last walked, most of that time unable to sit and write or stand and write, I have felt deader than usual inside. People close to me—family, babes and brutes—who have oft sought my company for peace of mind, have a hard time talking with me without growing angry or sad for me. I was their quiet listener, calm voice and sympathetic mirror. Now, I shake when I talk, my voice tainted with constant severe pain. Hell, last week, my physical therapist, a woman with 30 years experience, had to hold back tears as she worked on me.
I spend most of my time alone and in the dark, scooting, shrimping and crab-like skittering around on the floor. For two hours a day I can now sit and write. Writing history is energy taxing but doable. Travel writing is not possible, an easy take that lack of travel has stalled. Fiction I am currently writing in my mind. I have written 7 key chapters for SPQR in my head, mostly as I suffer too much to read or sleep of exercise. This is how I wrote my first novel, Big Water Blood Song, at work or in transit, putting it on paper on my day off.
The walking and working and training and fighting that have normally provided the energy for writing, are gone for now, some, I think for good. The medical people think they can get me walking again, but that I have dug my last ditch, cut down my last tree and fought my last fight. The ruck sack will be too heavy even when I’m healed, so my 40 pounds of belongings must become 25 pounds of worldly possessions, mostly two laptops.
Even so, I am less upset by my condition than are numerous close relations. Writing has returned and has restored my peace of mind, the 6 weeks of absolute hatred for my body already receding to the back of the mind as I once again find a purpose.
I am concerned for those who “have struggles with writing for personal purposes.” Three of my friends, a novelist, comic author and esoteric philosopher, find themselves buffeted by meat-puppet life to the point of being unable to complete books that they have long had in process.
My best advice is to set lower completion parameters. If you outline a 700 page book you will get only 1 reward, delayed for years. If you take that outline and turn it into 10 72 page books, you will get ten rewards for each segment, each feeling as good as what you would get at the end of the big book. Additionally, you will get a great sense of release for that 11th act of creation, knitting all 7 parts into an omnibus.
No rewrites. Old academia and publishing houses and established writers simply encouraged the idea of rewrites as an exclusionary device to winnow out most of the literary herd in favor of the few authors that could be put in set type.
Just write, despite the many reason your teachers have posited for delaying the release of your spirit into writing.
Thank you, Sir helping me recall some of these axioms I lived by when healthy, in hopes that their return might help restore some of my writing health.
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