My girlfriend gave me this beautiful notebook and a nice Parker a few months back. I have occasionally used the Parker. Mostly to scribble my name on the various secondhand novels I bought from College Street. The notebook, this beauty with its faux-worn pages and artsy green cover, is lying empty except for a quote I scribbled on the first page with, yes, the Parker.
“There is a pleasure sure in being mad which none but madmen know.”
That’s by John Dryden, to save you some Googling.
Anyways, this isn’t about the quote, or mercifully, Dryden.
This is about the empty notebook, and the Parker.
To come straight to the point, it’s lying empty because I’m afraid to write in it. I’m not exactly a writer you see. No offense, but just like most of you I just kinda tap out whatever random shit comes into my head. And, well….ink and paper is so permanent you know. I can’t delete a sentence. I can’t do a CTRL+A & DELETE and start over. I can’t close the page clicking “Don’t Save”. I can’t hide it with a password. I can’t just remove it after a month if I realise it was just the Old Monk talking. And then there’s that eternal question : whether what I write in it is worth reading or not.
Yes, a computer and especially the internet makes cowards of us all. I don’t have a sales quota to fill. I don’t have fans to live up to. To tell you the truth, if anybody ever reads that notebook, it will be accidental more than anything else. And yet, I’d rather leave it blank. I’d keep it for such a time when I’d something magical, and brilliant and BIG to write in it. In other words, I’d basically leave it alone for a really long time. Because unlike this here blog for example, I can’t take back whatever I say there.
If you find that contemptible, take a pen and write it down on a piece of paper and stick it on your wall. Go ahead.