It is after 11pm at night and I’m writing in my journal because this old man can’t sleep. I say old man because I’m in bed asleep before 10 most nights. Who am I kidding, it’s more like 9:30pm. In truth it has been so long since a night like this, when I’ve laid in bed, muscles crawling, unable to lie still. When it has happened before now I’ve got my arse up and stretched for 5 minutes to switch the muscles off. Most of the time this works a treat, but tonight is different, tonight my mind is racing too and there’s no switching that off with a little stretching. So here I am sat in my living room writing to switch my brain off, to let it off the leash and “run around the park”.
As always I have been reading something new and over the past few weeks it has been a book called “Present over perfect” by Shana Niequist. Although I have different beliefs and opinions to the author it has been enjoyable relating to the “busyness” story she presents, made easier by the honesty of her writing and the short, digestible chapters. It has also given me some hope for my own writing, especially when doubt creeps in on the validity of my scribbles.
Having read a lot on writing, self help, coaching and psychology it leaves me wondering what I can bring to the table. In truth I do my best not to dwell on this too long because I feel I would never write again! I don’t feel that I have an inspiring story to tell or that I am an exemplar of writing prowess (this sentence being a case in point). In many ways I am just an ordinary man without an X-Factor-esque background of tragedy or hardship. When they say to write about what you know I don’t imagine they mean procrastination and telling shit jokes. But within this mental quandary I sometimes find myself in is the chance to write, to practice and figure a path out. For now it’s less important that I know what to write about and more important to just fucking write.
Que sera, sera.
Having written that last paragraph I now contradict myself (as is often the case) as I am now working on a new book idea. The working title is: SHIT! And other runners mistakes. The book will be a compendium of mistakes and failures, made and experienced by runners of all abilities, because everyone has a story about them pooing on a run. Oh really? They don’t? Soz, just me then. As I mentioned before it is best to write about what you know (not pooing in my case, clearly) and running is one of those things. Don’t get me wrong I am no expert, but I’ve done a few marathons and pooed in a lot of places, so I feel qualified to write about it. For now this book is just a lighthearted collection of stories that anyone can learn from or relate to. There are so many books out there telling you how to run, what to eat and which music to listen to in order to have the best run that nobody needs another. What we really need to do is just lace up and get out there for a trot. It doesn’t matter if your trot is more donkey than show jumper, it’s more important to get back to “feeling it out” and listening to your body. No book will tell you how to do that. Just make sure you visit the bathroom before leaving the house.
So in a first for me I have literally written a load of crap here. Thank you for reading this and sticking with it to the bitter end, you are a true friend. I am now off to sleep now that I have had that wonderful brain dump (pun intended).
Update you soon on the book,