Another conversation between the left and the right–not politics — sides of my brain.
They are sitting in a cafe having a cafe au lait watching the boats go by on the Seine and in the shadow of the Notre Dame.
“Stop it already, that is so banal and you’ve used cafe twice in one sentence and you can’t see the boats on the Seine and be in the shadow of Notre Dame. It’s logistically impossible,” Letty, my left brain protests.
Actually, the three of us are sitting on the couch, laptop in lap and drinking coffee forty- five minutes before bed which is like playing roulette with insomnia–six slots one is loaded.
“You know what’s wrong with you?” Rubina, my right brain says.
Letty appears to ponder this.
“It’s rhetorical,” I tell her.
Rubina makes a fist and sticks out her pinky finger at Letty. “You have no imagination. You are NOT an idea person.”
She’s right of course. Rubina takes flights of fancy and can work up a story, the entire structure of a novel weave it around all day, making elaborate sand castles with people and character arcs and a solid plot. I am brought along for the ride and of course because I’m in a hurry to follow Rubina on this trek I neglect to bring any writing materials. I think she plans it that way. I run after her the whole time and we fall down in a forest with dappled light and giant toad stools. She is happy. I am breathless. It’s fabulous. I entertain visions of a best seller.
“Okay, I say getting up. “Let’s go write this down.”
“It’s a great story.”
“So.” Rubina sits up.
“Well, let’s make a book.”
“Oh, I’m over it.”
“What do you mean?”
“We created it and had fun. So it’s done,” Rubina says studying her cuticles as if they are an oracle.
Letty interjects, “See, she’s zany but I’m disciplined. Without me, you two would be nothing.”
“Meglomaniac,” we say in unison. Rubina smirks.
“But she’s right. You are zany and you are an idea person, but without her sense of discipline we’d have nothing to show for ourselves.”
Rubina glares at me, mutinous. She stalks out.
“Get a pencil,” Letty says.
“I’m on it.”
The flights are more fun but the getting it down is the necessity that novelists face. I go to my desk and Letty sits down like a school marm ready to help the errant child focus on her homework. Ugh. Out of the corner of my eye, I catch a glimpse of Rubina chasing butterflies in the back yard. Letty smacks the desk with a ruler. I start writing words that become sentences, sentences become paragraphs and paragraphs turn into pages…