Wednesday, February 4, 2009


It’s Wednesday. The CAA meeting has an open mike tonight. I’ve been practicing all month . Took the week off work. Morning to night going through the tombs of unheard prose and poetry. That’s just the stuff from the basement, didn’t even get to the storage lockers or the stuff I left in my parents basement. Impossible to choose. What can they expect me to say in 5 minutes. I need an audience for at least a week. All the material I’ve got. My great chance. No sleep. Pots of coffee. Everything is no good or it’s plain great.
The neighbours been complaining about the ‘noise”. Phillistine. Doesn’t understand art. A soliloquy has to be shouted. The night is almost here. They should have given me more time to prepare. I’ll never be ready.
And what about clothing. Couldn’t find a thing that was appropriate. Had to get a whole new wardrope. Days of searching for just the right ‘look’. The author look. What about socks. You can tell a lot about a person by their socks. Should I wear them ?
Hours of reading in front of the full length mirror. 5 minutes. No way. I need at least an hour. I’ll take an hour of material and they’ll want me to read it.
Since I’m reading , they’ll notify the press. Won’t they? Spell my name right. That’s what the sign up sheet was for. For the agents and publishers to get my name right. Maybe I should call them myself just in case. I’d like to tell the people who usually ignore me I’m reading but they’ll hear in good time.
Now why isn’t the door open? It’s Wednesday. 7 pm. The Alliance for the Arts Building. Howe Street. I’ve got to get in there. I can see there’s people in the board room through the window. They’re looking at me.
That’s right. I’m pounding on the glass door. Let me in. I’m an author. I’m reading. Don’t just wave me away. I’m an author.
Haven’t seen a crow bar eh! That’s why guys like me drive trucks. Thought that glass door was going to keep me out. I’m an author.
Old people huddled in a corner of the board room. Saying something about being Canada Council. I know that’s just a small part of the Canadian Author’s Association.
Suits and dresses. White hair. Eying the crow bar. Waiting for me to read. Obviously.
Crowd gathering outside. Glass everywhere. Some people on the street getting noisy.
Guess it’s time to read. Crowbar kind of works like a conductor’s baton. Good thing I practiced shouting the words.
Sirens. Crowd control at last.
Yea. I know it’s good. I’m an author. Everything is good when you’re an author. It’s a being thing. I’m being the art here. I’m communing with the muse. I’m in the zone. I can feel the writing flowing through me.
Nice police guy asking for the crow bar. “I know you’re an author.” Sure I give him the crow bar. He understands.
I think the reading went pretty well too.
One of the cops told me on the way to the station he’s a writer. Has this cop book he’s working on.
The lawyer wasn’t impressed to be called out of his poker game. Got me off though. Said the judge wants to be a writer, too. Both figured I’d be better back at work so I could pay his fees, the cost of the door and the old guys dry cleaning bill. How was I supposed to know the old guy had prostate problems. I’ll pay the fine out of my royalties.
The picture in the province looked good . Spelt my name right. “Crowbar author”. Good ring to that.
Now I’m looking forward to reading next Wednesday.
How was I supposed to know the CAA meeting was on the second Wednesday of the month and not the first. I got the time right. Authors shouldn’t have to think of everything. That’s why I need a publisher. Get one of those cute secretaries to follow me around everywhere.

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