May 12, 2010KR BlogKR

This Year I Rewrite My Novel–Part IX, “Boomerang Book-Throwing Action.”

What strikes me most about this is not that it’s about women and how doors have been closed for us in a slew of professional areas for ever and ever (or a very long time) but that the ludicrousness of this video could almost apply to any author, any artist, or perhaps even any low-paid entrepreneur.

Action figures, like Barbie dolls, represent a kind of exaggerated ideal of how children embody desire. They have big muscles so they can beat up people and Barbie has the body and the face and the clothes and the Ferrari to attract the dudes with the big muscles that can beat up people.

And why is everyone, even the toy companies, always picking on us writers by representing as kinda sociopathic, kinda looney? (I’m thinking of Jack Nicholson in The Shining. Wouldn’t we all want a winterly, writerly retreat in rural Colorado? Sounds kinda like a couple residencies and fellowships I know.) Or kinda homely? Or by not representing us at all?

It’s like we all got respiratory diseases and a taste for absinthe. Our complexions aren’t good enough. We can’t afford ProActiv. Things upset us more than they upset other people and we throw our heads in the oven.

We never learned to bake.

Are writers more prone to dying than anyone else?

Aren’t we all prone to dying, or at least on our way there?

When I was a kid, I knew I wanted to be a writer. But the ones that I could look up to–with the good hair and nice clothes and stuff (childhood can be so shallow)–committed suicide.

But is the writer more or less antisocial, more or less alone than the CPA who holes herself up for tax season, or the med. student (who I met in Anguilla) that spends his days in the library at his school in Dominica and then does cocaine in a strip club during spring break?

Are we just more tragic because we make less money?

Or are we more tragic because we, like everyone else is alone, except that sometimes, we REALLY, REALLY like it?