The Creative Game Of Cat And Mouse
I’m in pursuit of finishing my book, BOX. It has been a chase within a seemingly endless maze of running thought, through the inertia of writer’s block, around high expectations and the frustration against a self imposed finish line. Sometimes I wonder who’s chasing who as the process has had me running in circles. Who is the cat? Who is the mouse? And where the hell is the cheese? The idea was simple enough. Write a puzzle book for people to solve and have some fun with it. However, the scope of the book has been an insurmountable mountain of cheddar. Every peak I traverse, I look beyond and only see a dozen more stinky peak wedges to pummel through and make swiss of. Perhaps I am the mouse, after all, and the cat is the immense weight of expectation in close, hot pursuit.
It hasn’t helped that I have an OCD inclination towards perfection, but the book needs utmost attention to detail or else the whole premise falls apart. Every puzzle piece needs to be implemented with exact precision. If I fail in one piece, the whole structure falls in on itself. And I’ve created a monster of a puzzle. Sometimes I stall myself when I look forward and all I see is a 128 ft vertical wall before me with no visible means to scale it. I look to either side of me and the wall moves past both horizons ad infinitum. I want to turn back and run away for even if I scale this wall I don’t know what lays beyond it, but when I turn around all I see is my mirrored doppelgänger standing before me, hands on waste, staring fiercely back, boring a miserable hole directly into the confines of my heart. This unrepentant and ruthless slave master won’t allow me to stop until he has bled every word out of me to completion.
So I bleed. I run the race, feeling the cat’s claws taking opportune swipes at me but I take the nicks and cuts and always stay just ahead of its full grasp and every so often I’m able to turn back and give my doppelgänger a hearty Fuck You! only to watch him seethe and rage and double the efforts of his chase. I swallow the tiny fear beating in my chest and scurry and zig-zag up the wall and if I’m clever enough the unrelenting feline slips and sways until it gives up chase and can only snarl in admission of defeat. Here’s to hoping that whatever lays beyond the edge of the wall of my own BOX can keep the hunger of my hunter at bay.
– Hunted Rabbit…er…Mouse