Bi-Polar Bare

A while ago a lad on the bus was chatting to me about his girlfriend. The mere fact of having obtained such an asset positively changed his demeanour. Instead of his normal monosyllabic grunt and slouch he became a young gent. His acne receded and was transformed into vocabulary.

About ten days ago he did not come out to board the bus to go home. Unsympathetic teenagers grew restive in my mirror. I cranked up the music but that brought complaints from the headphone wearers. At the last minute he appeared being led by a teacher. His tear stained face was swollen. It was over. Over. Over, with that terrible brick wall finality of a dead hamster in the palm of a young hand and the rest of mortality. The vocabulary acne inversion flipped like the magnetic poles of the planet in history.

Yesterday, they got back together. Compasses started to work again. GPS systems stopped talking backwards. No one should feel insecure. It won’t last.

I’ve been giving away books on Amazon KDP. I am one of the more successful donors of the American literary world. However, in the UK, the natural sense of cool reserve and dissimulation prevents the accepting of gifts from strangers. I have the feeling that if I were to tour in my white Rolls Royce cabriolet throwing bank notes to the crowd, they would run after me handing them back. Probably I would get a ticket for littering. 

blueprint for a question not yet asked

Then the unthinkable happened. I started to sell books. Maybe after all I was a writer. I exchanged my life and personality for  sales figures. Some days I see myself as a pie chart, other days a block graph. Yesterday I had that corporate spreadsheet feeling. Personality and self image issues – surely not!
As I looked out from my window yesterday into the cold clear dusk I saw a tree reflecting the direction of life, albeit very simplified. 

Today sales dipped a little. A reviewer thought I should give up and drive a bus or something. The GPS is talking babble. I think I’m too old for acne. Insecure? Me?

Emma thinx: Whatever you’ve put in someone’s life today – they’re already passing it on.

14 thoughts on “Bi-Polar Bare

  1. Since I have one teenage boy, and one pre-teen, the “acne transformed into vocabulary” really made me smile. Yes, I feel like a school girl seeking validation for my existence occasionally, but I'm developing a thicker skin as a writer, just like I did as a Wife, Mom, Entrepreneur, Elementary Yard Supervisor, Cook, Domestic Goddess…

    Great post, Emma!


  2. You turn a phrase from ordinary to humorous without effort, it seems. I think if you have a fault, it may be that you're too smart for the average reader. So, hang in there for the literary crowd. They'll find you.


  3. Thank you for your comment and kind words, and it's nice to officially meet you! It was interested what you said about the business side of writing, focusing on the sales reports. I don't have those reports yet, but I feel like I've been working so hard at building an online presence recently that the writing is becoming secondary. I'm sure it doesn't get easier, I just have to find the balance that works best for me. Thank you for this post…it hits home.


  4. Your blogs are always such a treat. And I know for a fact there are at least 17 thinkers left on this planet… now two of them speak foreign languages and one's only ten year old, but I think her mum will lend her the money to buy a book. So whatever you do – don't quit!


  5. Thanks to all you guys for stopping by. Michael – yes, this is a big problem. I used to see myself as hopeless but sincere scribbler. Once the great whirlwind grabs you it becomes a different game. You start acting like a politico, anxious about focus groups and critics. Getting off the keyboard and driving the bus saves me. I see kids who can hardly read or write at all and never will. Then there's me angsting about my paragraph style. To them I'm the difference between a frown and a smile. They pay me back.


  6. Yeah I know that feeling. My sales are low, but steady. My thinking is that things will pick up when I have more books out.

    Writers write…we'd be doing it anyway, so we might as well put it out there for others to read (for better or worse) that's my take on the matter. The sales are secondary and only have the significance we give them. The craft is what is important. Besides, the sales come from the craft. If you build it, they will come and all that jazz 🙂


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