642 in 20 · On Writing

642 in 20 – #3

What your desk thinks about at night. 

I hope she leaves the desk lamp on tonight.

She cleaned me earlier this week so there’s less clutter. Less protection.

At least she moved the books off me.

Damn books. Damn characters.

They use and abuse me.

She’s writing a new one. A new story. These characters aren’t finished yet so they aren’t so strong. But the finished ones…boy can they really drive a desk crazy. The wall is filled with books. Filled with characters itching for darkness. Scraping off crisp paper pages and coming to life in the office.

These writers, they have no idea what they do. They don’t think beyond the page. To the darkness. When characters can taste freedom. They immediately come to me – the desk. I am familiar. For many of them, it was where they were conceived, cultivated, and completed.

She’s got some nasty characters half-written. The Halfers, I call them. (I know, it’s not very creative. I’m a desk, give me a break.) These ones flip and flop around. Make a mess. Drool on me. Jump on me. Sometimes they attack the Fullers (yes, those characters in complete books), and the Fullers get pissed. It’s a full-on (pun intended) character war over here.

At least I can be thankful that she’s got diversity on her shelves. There are more poets and lovers than killers and fighters so the wars don’t last too long.

The chair gets his fair share of business too. The characters like to sit and spin on him. The lovers screw on him at every opportunity.

Few characters mess with the machines. The computer, printer, hard drives. They know they need the machines for life, so they don’t play with them.

But they like my flat surface. My ability to be the thing on which they were conceived. On which they can be placed when they’re complete…or gestating or half-ing.

I don’t mind the dust or the stuff. The baskets make me itchy, but I deal with it.

She’s been using me more in the waking hours. Using the machines. I find when she cleans me, when she puts the books on the shelves – clears and tidies, she’s doing the same with her mind. Then she uses me more for creating. This is a gift. It’s my job to be her support.

She left the laptop machine here. For days. I was thrilled that she sat at me and used the other machine, the one that doesn’t move, to do her work. That laptop could be the death of me. It fits on her lap. I mean, this is a game-changer for desks around the world. We could become obsolete. Who needs a desk when one can use a lap?

I know that it’s not the same. It’s not the same when she writes on her lap. She writes better when she writes on me. Longer. Harder. I can see it.

Back to the night…the characters. When the light is on, less characters come to me. They are afraid of the light. They are afraid to be seen. Luckily, I don’t have that problem. I want to be seen. I want her to come to me. To use me.

I am proud when she writes about me. Shares me with her friends. Brings her friends to my side.

I was listening to one character speak about how a woman needs her own room to write. A solid desk upon which to practice her craft. I like her. She is welcome here.

I like this space. It beats being in a box. In a darkness no desk enjoys. On a shelf in a store. Waiting to be purchased. Hoping to be brought home and be made an integral part of someone’s creative process.

Will she come to me today? I wonder. I will wait. I will endure the characters. I am ready.

It is a desk’s duty. To be strong. Sturdy. Supportive.

4 thoughts on “642 in 20 – #3

    1. Thanks! And…i think there’s a story in there…where characters from books come alive at night…i know it’s been done before, but perhaps if i think a little harder, i can find something ‘new’ for them to do!


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