If I Were a Tailor, I’d Stitch a Book

I suppose I always intended to write a book. Or, rather, to have written a book. I’ve never wanted to begin the process, only to complete it. And I wanted no part of the effort involved between starting and finishing it. That’s not true, not really. I enjoy writing. Sometimes, I love it. Sometimes it’s the only thing that keeps me moderately sane and prevents me from shattering into a million pieces.

Occasionally, I sit at the keyboard and think through my fingers for an hour or more at a time, pausing only briefly between spurts of creative energy to make coffee or flex my hands in a futile effort to relieve arthritic pain. I’d like to compile what I consider the very best of my writing into a book. I don’t know what the compilation would be called. Not an anthology of short stories, because much of what I’d want to include are not short stories. Not an anthology of essays, because…same thing. I suppose I could simply stitch together a stream-of-consciousness compendium that no one, other than I, would want to read. Actually, the compendium may be the best option, if for no other reason than it would enable a reader (if there were one) to develop a picture of who I am, who I have been, who I wanted to be. But, for that to work, the reader would have to care who I am, was, wanted to be. Regardless of arguments against the compendium, I certainly have plenty of material. I’m approaching twenty-six hundred posts on this blog, alone. At the end of August 2015, I recorded how many posts I’d written for other blogs that I either abandoned or, in a fit of writer’s existential rage, destroyed. Musings from Myopia, my first blog (that died at my own hand) lasted 1262 posts. I stopped posting on It Matters Deeply after the 82nd post. I’m not even bothering with other blogs I started but almost immediately abandoned. Thus, I have more than 3900 posts from which to draw material. Let’s be optimistic and say five percent of my posts might be worthy of being edited for inclusion in an anthology of sorts; that gives me 195 posts to massage into a book. But, perhaps I should be more realistic and say only two percent of my posts have a modicum of redeeming value. Still that’s 78 posts. I think there’s a book  hidden in my writing. There’s plenty of material in pieces that never made it to my blogs, too.

I’m thinking all of this to myself, documenting my thoughts on the interwebs. I wonder, could I actually stitch together a readable anthology of—something? Actually, I don’t wonder. I know I could do it. The question is, will I?——


About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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