When I could walk and work, I reserved some time a week to read and write. Eric and Nathan would eat out, and I’d walk to my favorite coffee shop, order a decaf latte, choose a remote empty place, and sit down to sip my coffee while I read and wrote. I ‘d always look forward to that weekly evening spent in solitude. I had a project for a poetry book on waste (in a metaphorical sense) first, and a book on memory, language, and foreignness later.
Now I don’t need to reserve a personal time: all my time is free. Lately, as I mentioned before, I’ve started translating. I only take jobs that don’t have tight deadlines, and not more than two or three at a time. I’ve even rejected prospective and old clients who contacted me with potential translations. In both cases, they were fairly large organizations, and I had pretty bad experiences with that kind of organization; they have no respect for freelancers. So, now I’ve added translating to the activities that give me a sense of enjoyment and pleasure.
My regular writing practice consists of several steps: I jot down thoughts on my notebook; then I translate these thoughts into poems or essays; then I type them into my computer; and then I edit, and edit, and edit. And in all these steps I find content. When I’m done and the time has come to send what I’ve written to the publisher or editor, a sense of loss washes over me.
But there’s a further reason I’m in bed with my notebook and computer on my lap: while I remain in bed immersed into the world I’m building with poetry or prose, I can forget of getting up. And if I forget of getting up, I can pretend that I have two good legs. I can picture myself walking confidently and freely.