I was going to write a bit more about The Maytrees, but yesterday I read a post by Alexander Chee in which he wrote about, in addition to many other wonderful things including the connection between novels and the news, his pre-writing rituals and the need to adapt. This post was timely. For the last few days I’ve been thinking about changing how I begin my day.
Let me interrupt this logical sequence to say I just now realized yet another possible reason why this post came back to me this morning as I was crossing the border between asleep and awake (as I was leaving my sleep–still playing these CDs constantly). One of the things the novel I finished a year ago (and that I have not sent to very many agents yet and that I keep telling myself I need to make time to do so) is about is the impact the news has on one woman.
Nabokov, in an interview for Playboy in 1964, wrote that in the winter, he would wake up to an Alpine chough (which I thought was a typo for church until I just googled it) alarm clock around seven and then that he would lie “in bed mentally revising and planning things.”
Dani Shapiro wrote, in one of the How We Spend Our Days posts, that as she gets her son off on his morning, she tries to “reserve just a bit of myself in that quiet, dreamy state of just-waking, so that once my family is out the door, I can turn to my work.”
For a little more than a year, my black, rectangular alarm clock has been waking me up at 6:30. I get right on the treadmill and watch Morning Joe for thirty minutes before getting my son off to school. This morning, I lay in bed for that thirty minutes and a thousand things entered my mind and they’re still coming. Maybe, as Chee wrote, “It is time for me to adapt again.”