Writing is loud and lonely work, sleep’s enemy.

I stare at the ceiling. The sun isn’t even thinking about rising yet. What in the world am I doing up? I sneak out of the bedroom.

My mind having pestered me all day and night, I finally convince myself I had enough sleep and drink a good dose of caffeine. While it lasts, my eyelids are light. I bounce in front of the computer, nervous and excited. At last!


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Like a convict revealed under a guard’s uniform, my imagination lets free an uncountable number of characters. They run around, taking action, spouting lines, generally wreaking havoc. Teen boys and girls revel with magic, dragons battle, kings and creatures plot in the shadows. Each strives to live a lifetime in the hourglass of a cup of coffee.

I watch, taking notes as quickly as I can. Each is spectacular, and together they are an irresistible force. Who could sleep with all that racket anyway?

I see bits of my previous day in them. Over there, that warrior moves like the police officer I saw, and that dragon’s scales shimmer like yesterday’s sun shower.

Out from the crowd, a young woman marches up, undeniable. “We have decided we need more time.”

“I’m doing all I can,” I mumble. I mean, really, I’m just talking to myself. Besides, she is distracting me from all the action.

“Please,” she says. The look in her eyes is very convincing.

So, I’ll get up a little bit earlier tomorrow.