I sat in the cab, engrossed with a problem I was trying to solve with my work, a short family trip that I had procrastinated planning on, and of course, writing—in that order. Just then, I noticed the wrong road getting closer and right as the driver was about to make a turn, I told him it was the wrong route. In this ordeal, the intricate tapestry of thought I was lost in collapsed quickly, and all I had done since the moment I left the apartment was lost. I only wrote bits and pieces mentally for the rest of the route, which was not as long to do anything else. I am only putting all that down now, like a loyal assistant. There are multitudes in me. I give myself the orders like a general and follow them like the cavalry. This autonomy has given me so much, and it has taken so much. Now, with everything split even, I sit and write.
As I jot the words down, having iterated over them a hundred times since the evening, I realise there is madness to my method. There is order in my disorder; even when I am in disarray, I am fastidious. When I meet a friend or acquaintance or talk to them on the phone, it is not uncommon for them to ask me: How do you do the same things every day? How do you keep up with it? How do you not forget or lose yourself and never find the motivation to start again? I try to answer them, but then, I get as close as we get to articulating how we breathe. It only gets harder when you try it. Some things appear naturally in people. For a lot of people, it is unforeseen genius. For me, it is this tendency to keep at something.
For many years now, I have joked that some of us are the children of Sisyphus—we do not know why we roll the rock uphill, and if we ever did, we have long forgotten. Jocular as this remark is, I am now beginning to see some truth in it after all. I could not tell you why it is that even if I stop writing in the morning, an hour in the night clears itself up for me as if I had planned it. The universe conspires for a lot of things. In my case, it keeps me where I am as long as I truly want to be there. What it wants from me? I will never know. I am but a man who sits and writes, whether it is day or night is irrelevant.