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Three Great Reasons Not to Write
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I don't know what got into me. I shouldn't have done it, but I did. And now I'll probably never write another word.

This past week I reread three of my favorite novels. They may as well have been new to me. People find it difficult to believe I can remember loving a book, and hardly anything else about it. If you liked a story that much, you'd remember, they insist. But they don't have my memory.

For years, when I was young, books were my sustenance. I devoured them, drank them in, breathed them. There's probably not an atom of me that isn't partly novel. I took in the essence and forgot the details.

Which means I can experience books all over again as if for the first time.

So, fool that I am, in quick succession, I reread I, the Jury by Mickey Spillane, Elric of Melnibone by Michael Moorcock, and Tiger, Tiger (a.k.a.The Stars My Destination) by Alfred Bester.

Why should I continue my aimless twiddling at the keyboard? How could I approach any of those characters, settings and plots and how could I avoid trying? Has there been a private investigator in the last fifty years who hasn't done his damnedest to be Mike Hammer, or done his best not to be him? What fantasy hero could surpass the doomed Elric? How could anyone imagine a more compelling sf ant-hero than Gully Foyle? (Bent on revenge as Mike Hammer but, eventually a bit of a philospher like Elric)

One of my shortcomings as a writer is that I am not blessed (or cursed) with the unshakable conviction so many writers seem to possess that suffering humanity cries out for their golden prose.

It's all been said before and better.

Perhaps I should forget writing, just shake the rain off my hat, grab a sword and jaunte off to an orienteering meet.

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