Wednesday, September 15, 2010

It's All Relative

Time. I don’t think there is anything more subjective than the passage of time. How long is a year when it’s half your life? How long is a year when it’s a hundredth of your life? (My brain goes to some seriously weird places when when I'm working out backstory for a new book.)

This summer, I had ten weeks to experience life as a full-time writer. For once I was free of the arbitrary constraints of a clock. I didn’t care what day of the week it was. I didn’t care what time it was. I’ve never felt particularly diurnal. I seem to be happiest when I sleep in three to four hour blocks as needed. I was absolutely free of schedules. It was heaven.

In The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, the eternally brilliant Douglas Adams describes the planet of Ursa Minor Beta as not only having a topography of almost entirely subtropical coastline, but also, “By an equally suspicious freak of temporal relastics, it is nearly always Saturday afternoon just before the beach bars close.” Adams understood the fantasy of a perfect place is more than about where you are, but having unlimited time to enjoy it.

Time squirted through my hands this summer like pure glycerine, and I expect I’ll get more writing accomplished on the drudgery of my diurnal schedule—despite the interruption of my day job—but for ten astonishingly short weeks, I was as free of time’s hold on me as is my hold on it.

What does your chronometer tell you?

1 comment:

marcus said...

My chronometer tells me that I am entirely too busy, and that there is never enough time to sleep. How I envy you those ten weeks. I'm glad they were blissful ones. :)

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