Writing in the Dark

On December 21st, many writers and bloggers post about this being the shortest day of the year. How nice to be reminded for the forty-sixth time that it’s blinkin’ dark outside. And in Oregon, it’s really really dark. At three PM. Oregon’s so close to the arctic circle, that you can’t grow watermelon due to the five and a half-day growing season. Here, we all get grumpy and need vitamin D supplements as we sit around our full-spectrum lights and try not to maim each other.
But, there’s hope. From here on, the daylight hours (if you call total grey overcast daylight) will lengthen a bit each day.
That makes me happy.
Aren’t we writers used to writing in the dark? We grope along, trying to find the right words, aching to know what we really have to say. I think whomever decided we celebrate Christmas in December was onto something. Without a good reason to overspend, overeat, overdrink or over-whatever your tradition holds dear, we might all be sitting in the dark with our fangs bared, ready to poke one another’s eyes or otherwise start a war. As it is, we are so lucky. Even if we go whole hog over stuff that doesn’t matter, we also (well most of us) get the message of Peace on Earth. For that I’d light a full-spectrum lamp any day.

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