The Paper Chase

A guest post by Jeff Gregory

I guess I see my writing as a beautiful woman that I am trying to figure out how to court.  But like anything worthwhile, she isn’t making it easy on me.  No, writing is evasive.  She wants me to earn her affection.

journalI first caught a glimpse of her when I was in the third grade.  She came out in a writing assignment.  The teacher, I think, was merely interested in my knowledge of subjects, predicates, and verb conjugations.  Little did either of us know that she ignited a spark in me – a literary puberty, one might say.  And as puberty would have it, I was confused about what it was that I wanted.  I wasn’t prepared for the wiles of Writing.  There she was, but not with blonde curls and blue eyes summoning the wild oats of a young buck, my seducer was the thrill of a boy’s adventure in a cave in the forest – flowing from my own hand with a life all its own.   Then she was gone.

I never totally forgot about her. Years later, she spied me from the bridge of the Starship Enterprise.  In eighth grade, I dreamed up a Star Trek novel.  I made it through about seven chapters before my young mind was distracted by something else.  Yet, I was enthralled by bringing life to people and adventures.

My crush could not stay away. In high school, I wrote a poem.  It was similar to Poe’s The Raven.  It was a dark story using rhyme.  For the first time, writing batted her lovely eyes at me.  A friend of mine insisted on keeping the poem.  That was the first time I knew the romance was on – that this could be the love that I waited for.  However, waiting wasn’t enough.  I had to win her over.  The chase was on.

In college, my flame had transformed into somewhat of an intellectual.  An associate professor sat down and taught me to write essays in my freshman year.  I loved the structure, the rules.  My romance could actually have a formula – something that wouldn’t fail me, like math.  Two plus two is always four, right? On that stage it never did fail me, but I realized a romance is not really a romance if I only get to see her at work.  She wasn’t mine yet, so I continued the pursuit.

Since then, I have always tried to keep an eye on her and figure some way to finally make her mine. I have written a few blogs, worked as a columnist, and have done some freelance work. I have also started several versions of the “great American novel.”  Part of me thinks that is the real wedding – the successful, thought-provoking novel.  Another fragment of my mind believes that my love will always be elusive and unattainable because mystery is the biggest part of the romance.  Some day, I may let you know.  I plan to write my own epitaph.

[box border=”full”]jeff gregoryJeff Gregory does freelance writing and was formerly a weekly sports columnist for The National Indoor Football League.  He is currently the executive director of the Henderson-Henderson County, KY Human Rights Commission.  You can read his Psychosomatic Wit at http://psychosomaticwit.blogspot.com.[/box]

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