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| January 10, 2011 | Comments (2)

Good Morning,  Everybody !

I greet you on a crisp, cold Monday. The sun it trying to shine.  It is just past 8 AM and I am waiting……waiting for the ConEd guy to come and read my meter. For those of you not familiar with New York City alphabets, that stands for ConEdison, the utility company that supplies gas and electricity to Gotham’s residents. Let’s see what happens !  The window of time he gave me for the visit was 8 to 12 AM. What if I had to go to work and not just sit at home and blog !!??

For the past several months,  we have been having fun here at Fawlty Towers with little electric heaters that resemble real fireplaces. They are portable, amazingly light, stand about two feet high by eighteen inches wide and have a window through which we watch a fake flame leaping to no where.  And they give out great heat. The point of mentioning this new  household bauble is: I expect our electricity bill to be sky high, really exorbitant. Oh, what the hell, you only live once ! Gotta stay warm and why not have fun doing it !

Which brings me to several topics for today’s blog. This first item will probably be of interest mainly to writers and book-lovers, but perhaps there is broader meaning in what I am thinking for others as well.

The question I pose to myself as I contemplate writing another book is: is there any  juice left ? I have written two books, slim volumes of the memoir variety. (They are listed and described on my blog.) As I contemplate my third book, I find myself seized by “stage fright” or should I say, “writers’ fright” otherwise known as writer’s block.

This stressful feeling occurs everytime I write ANYTHING, an article, even a letter to a friend and takes the form of: do I have it in me to write this thing, this letter, this book, this article or are all my creative juices gone, used up? Do we have a limited, fixed amount of creativity in our noodles and just how much is that endowment, quantity-wise?

Look at some famous writers like Harper Lee, JD Salinger and Truman Capote. Their influence was great , but their output in terms of quantity, modest indeed. But then there are the Stephen Kings and the Ruth Rendells who continue to write book after book….Quien sabe ? So let’s see if I can squeeze out another scribble.

Moving to another book-related experience, the other day I went into our local Barnes and Noble bookshop in Manhattan at East 86th Street near Lexington Avenue. As the descending escalator brought me into the main hall, I gasped and couldn’t believe my eyes. Where, only days ago, there had been tables and shelves loaded with books, new arrivals, fiction, non-fiction, you name it, now what greeted my eye was NOTHING but emptiness and large, blindingly  white tables. Affixed to these miserable pieces of furniture were signs bearing one word : NOOK.

NOOK is Barnes & Noble’s new electronic book. I know they are wonderful and the wave of the future, but the shock that registered in this bibliophile’s brain on seeing this white void and no “REAL” books, is still with me. We are told, and it is probably true, that print edition books will never die out completely, that they will probably become a quaint, boutique item, always there for the nostalgia-minded. We are also assured that as readers we can do all the good and bad things to these  slim new invaders as we did to the old hard copies –  dog-ear them, write in the margins…..still it will never be the same. Does Sandra Bullock replace Rita Hayworth? No way !

I’ll sign off now and leave you to contemplate the charms of Rita.  Have a good day, as they say in Walmart !

Moon Dog Waiting for ConEd.

Category: Friends

Comments (2)

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  1. jim arrigan says:

    Hi Sam, Enjoyed your story in the WP

    • Sam says:

      Thanks, Jim. I hope the article wasn’t too self-pitying. One tends to slip into that mode if one is not careful !



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