You want nothing but patience--or give it a more fascinating name, call it hope. -- Jane Austen

I love walking through foggy days, and especially foggy nights. They remind me of London or my college years in Grand Rapids. The world feels more intimate: closer, softer, yet more dangerous. Streetlights form pale tents. Footsteps sound strangely near. Every man should wear a trench coat; every woman can play the femme fatale. Let me pull on my fingerless gloves, hand me a cup of coffee, and ooh, yes, I love the fog.

But not when it's settled over my brain and swathed my writing plans in sticky mist.

I feel like I'm still thinking through a haze, and after two solid months, it is making me crazy. I can't even fully identify what's wrong.

I've done what I know to do: I took long reading breaks to indulge in fabulous novels. I eased up on my writing goals. I cooked up a storm, hoping to entice my creativity home. (Plum crepes, anyone?)

Then I tried pressing harder, cranking out 8000 words in two days, pushing my writing hours farther and farther. I've drunk enough coffee to wake a yak.

But there's still a greasy thumbprint where my brain used to be, and I don't know what to do anymore.

Perhaps the sun will burn the mist off, or rain will come and exhaust the clouds. Whichever it takes, I hope it hurries. My characters' voices are distant and strange in this weather, and I can't see them clearly enough to know whether they're walking toward me or moving farther away.

Or maybe they found a pen on the sidewalk, and are changing this story behind my back, writing me out of my place...

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