WRITING

I fell asleep with my forehead on the keyboard and my 13,000-word article went viral.

And my Panamanian editor put my story on social media and made me instantly wealthy!

Panamanian Editor . . . Image by aaron-enterprises from Pixabay

Or was all that part of the same dream?

I think maybe I should stop reading those ‘how to write’ articles.

Or maybe cut back on the midnight coffee and cigarettes.

Well, hell. If this clickbaited, dream-infested article doesn’t take off, I may as well quit anyway.

I’m only writing this story because it actually happened in real life. (Not the forehead thing — it was an elbow.)

I mean, my dear fellow writers, haven’t you had the experience of looking at a draft of your own and suddenly had the whole stupid thing disappear? Right when you were about to delete the dumbest part, and did something with the keyboard — but what? And you looked for your now-missing story in . . .

But wait! It just happened again. I guess I fell asleep again. This time, thankfully, I found this story saved in ‘stories.’ Which come to think about it is my real problem.

They just don’t pay me enough for this crap. And that’s because I live in Panama, so Medium doesn’t pay me at all. Which would be fine with me — except that they inconveniently don’t let me pay for my subscription either. The money is handled differently here, and there’s no PayPal or debit card. So that in a few weeks I’ll be dead in the water (again), unable to read my own articles because as a ‘non-member,’ I’m not allowed to read the stories written by others that I key off from. And you writers out there, bless your hearts, can’t even buy me a gift subscription until after Medium has booted me out (again).

Meanwhile, I’m writing stories like this one to take a break from my capstone series on Solar Villages and Farms, which is a draft itself waiting to be sent to other writers for helpful comments. Which, duh, I will have a hard time doing if I’m cut off. I’m strongly tempted to make a publication of the series, which would allow collaborators to write articles on the subject. But first I need to have them take a look at the drafts.

These are the thoughts that drive me to the brink! May even drive me to drink — and not coffee this time. My Panamanian partner says he’ll buy a gallon of rum in two days to share with me. Seems like a good solution to me. I know from experience I can drink and write. You’ll hardly notice the difference.

Okay, I’m gonna try to sleep now. This time I’m gonna move both keyboards to the other side of the room so this nightmare doesn’t repeat. Right?

Right.

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Living in rural Panamá — non-extractive, non-capitalistic. Expat USA. Scientist, writer, researcher, teacher. STEM mentor +languages. Gargoylplex@protonmail.com

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Fred Ermlich

Fred Ermlich

Living in rural Panamá — non-extractive, non-capitalistic. Expat USA. Scientist, writer, researcher, teacher. STEM mentor +languages. Gargoylplex@protonmail.com

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