Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Dispatch From The Blackout

Blackout! Power out.
Waiting for the light.
Everywhere in darkness,
How am I to write?

As you can see, yesterday's blackout in Toronto (July 8/2013) had me so downhearted that I resorted to bad poetry. Luckily I wasn't affected by any of the flooding, which I only learned about this morning! I would have been trapped downtown with no way home if I'd been working; I never thought I'd be grateful for unemployment! I did manage to get some work done in spite of the situation, including the post below:

I'm sitting in a bus shelter on the corner of Bathurst and Antibies, a ten-minute walk from my building, in the middle of a blackout and a thunderstorm. It was the only place I could go where I could sit, out of the rain, with enough light to write by. The nearby Tim Horton's is closed, so I couldn't get a cup of tea (aaarg!). Most places were closed due to lack of power, but a family-owned convenience store remained open and willing to sell me a can of Wild Cherry Pepsi provided I had exact change.

So, against considerable odds, I have a drink and I'm still able to write! Not for much longer, though; it's 8:30 PM, and what little sunlight I've been getting through the storm clouds will be gone very soon. Already my eyes are hurting. I was hoping to get started on my next article for Toronto.com, but no go - I need the Internet for that. I was editing one of my manuscripts on my computer earlier today; that's no longer an option, either. That leaves me with the projects I can write longhand: this post, and my current novel project, Zombie Jesus Day.

And now this session is done; my eyes are crying out for vengeance. It really says something about how dependent we all are on electricity. Even writers like me who write mainly by hand can only do so much in the absence of precious voltage. I hope this blackout doesn't last too long. If this post does indeed get posted here, you can rest assured we made it through!

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