As most of you know, for someone who doesn’t “work”, I am always doing something.
My most recent something was to participate with The Allegory Project as both an author and a designer. I had the opportunity to interpret the six In Print Writers’ Organization story submissions to be shown at the Studio Ghosts show at the Allegory Gallery through July 13.
It was a wonderful experience to get to blend two of my favorite arts, writing and design.
The In Print partnership with The Allegory Project is a great opportunity for our members. It opens our writing to a whole new audience and stories are printed in the insert promoting each opening. Six was good for me this month– I don’t think I could have committed to graphically interpreting more, but future shows are open to many more member submissions. I encourage In Printers to submit! (I also encourage non-members to join!) The theme for the next show is “Why I create.” The deadline for those stories, prose, poems, essays, etc will be the end of July.
When I first heard the theme of “Studio Ghosts”, I immediately thought of “muse”. And I just happened to have an award-winning poem that I had wanted to interpret graphically anyway. So I submitted it.
THEN I wrote a piece much more Studio Ghost specific. (Of course.)
Here is the story I wrote too late:
Papers flutter in a breezeless room before slipping to the floor and scattering with a whisper.
“Stop it,” I say as my fingers fly across the keyboard, eyes focused on my hands instead of the screen.
A bag in the corner crinkles as if it’s being opened and closed, opened and closed.
“Cut it out,” I snap. I’m in the zone; the story is (finally) flowing forth. I do not have time for distractions.
Invisible fingertips drum restlessly on the pile of books stacked by the door.
My favorite pencil, with sharpened tip and an eraser rubbed to the metal rim, rolls lazily across my desk. The worn yellow paint and pocked hexagonal shape cause it to trundle in spurts. Eventually it falls over the edge to the floor snapping my perfectly pointed lead.
“Quit it.” I finally glance up and mumble swear words under my breath as I stare at a screen filled with red underlines. I am a terrible typist. I correct the errors, thank you spellcheck, and hit Ctrl S. A new file opens as my screen fills with oooooooooooooooooo’s.
I swish a hand through the air above the empty keys. “Ooooooo,” I say. “Clever.”
The blade on my paper trimmer zips up and down, the arm bisecting a trapped sheet.
“What?” I cry, shoving my chair away from the desk. I look around my room. “What!”
I see the paint additives I bought to experiment with for my Word of Art project, still in their crinkly Michael’s bag. I could work on that, I think. But I’d have to clean up my card-making supplies first. Of course, I should make a few more cards for Girls Love Mail before I put it all away. No, I definitely have to finish trimming the bookplates for my daughter’s book themed baby shower. Books! I think, eyeing hungrily the ever-growing stack, there are so many I’d like to read. But I still need to edit my own pages…
With all of these projects haunting me, it’s a wonder I get anything done. I catch the row of underlined o’s on the screen and think, O’, but I don’t.