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    What to do When the Ideas Don’t Come

    Herman’s sitting with his head in his hands as I ask him, "What should I write about?" He should know. He used to run a writers’ group called "Writers’ Block." It’s the old problem of the blank paper, or in this case the blank computer screen with the non-stop blinking cursor. It’s as if the blinking cursor knows I have no idea what to write about.

    People often ask me where I get my ideas. I answer off the top of my head, "Whatever strikes me as interesting that particular day." And that is usually true. What is interesting today, it being June the 6th as I write to you, is that it is absolutely gorgeous outside after many days of clouds and rain. I was just sitting on the deck at the beach when my thoughts turned to you, my readers.

    The water in the lake is still ice cold as far as I’m concerned, although a neighbor’s daughter was splashing through it to see me a few minutes ago. She claimed it wasn’t cold, but I know better. Her name is Ashley and she is in the third grade. What is it about kids and their immunity to the cold? I no sooner would have a bathing suit on and be in the lake than I would be flying a plane.

    So all these distractions have kept me from coming up with a topic. Or you could say distractions are the topic here. Let me tell you what else the beautiful weather brings. Neighbors. And with them, the lawn mowers. Herman and I have bypassed the lawn mowing problem by planting gravel instead of grass. It always looks nice and requires zero maintenance. As I’m writing this to you, in fact, I’m being "serenaded" by my next door neighbor’s lawn mower.

    Today was actually a series of starts and stops for me. Herman was originally going to the Americade in Lake George on his motorcycle with the sidecar (a "Ural" for those of you who care about that sort of thing). He had some malfunction with a spark plug and came home early. Then Terry, my aide, wound up leaving work early as she felt really sick all day with a cold.

    It’s too bad Herman couldn’t go to the Americade rally in Lake George, but it turned out to be a good thing that he came home early so Terry could go home.

    So, just like that, the column wrote itself just by talking about the difficulty in writing the column and what came up today. Have a great Sunday and I’ll speak to you next week (I’m tired of competing with the neighbor’s lawn mower anyway).

    "Kathryn Spira, a native of Cleveland who pursued an acting career in NYC and Los Angeles, now pursues free lance writing from Caroga Lake here in Fulton County. Previous columns may be accessed at her web site www.kathrynskorner.com"