Rome and last paragraphs
I have spent the last week entangled in the last paragraphs of my book. I write a sentence, delete a sentence, re-read the paragraph, tell myself to move on and don’t. Then, I switch screens to Rome. Hotels in Rome. Which one? I use the research skills I’ve honed on the last three books to figure this out. It’s sort of overkill, like siccing Einstein onto an 8th grade math problem. I read reviews from tripadvisor, fodors, tablet, booking.com. I google map each neighborhood. Will I like the street the hotel is on? The Grand Hotel Plaza gets rave reviews on trip advisor, “My girlfriend really loved the pillows.” And horrendous reviews on hotels.com: “This is the worst hotel ever. We found an old coffee cup under the bed.”
Meanwhile, I hear the drumbeat of my book. One more paragraph. One more paragraph. But then there are train schedules to consider and tours. If you want to go to the Vatican, you have to go on a tour. Everyone says so. But which one? Look how many there are to choose from. I wonder if they certify guides in Italy. Why, yes, they do. Is this guide certified? How big is the group?
Then there are pages and pages of student work to read and think about. I write them letters about their work. But what do I write to them? Words from a professor can mean a lot. I need to be careful. I write a sentence, check my last paragraph, yes, there it still is, all tangled up. “K______, I am so impressed with how you have revised these poems.” But am I impressed? Or am I moved? Or am I struck by?
I hope that when I am disentangled from my book that everything else will disentangle as well.