I Can Do That, or “How is a Writer Like a Guitar Player?”

As I’ve mentioned here before, I’m a beginning guitar player. But there’s an aspect of this musical adventure that I haven’t mentioned before, and I do think this simple fact needs to be acknowledged—as a guitar player, I suck. A reader might be forgiven at this point for observing the obvious—“You’re a beginner. Of course you suck.” Sorry, no, it goes far beyond lack of practice and experience. While I’ve always loved music, I discovered early on that I have little natural aptitude for making it. If there’s a musical gene, it does not run in my family and I for sure don’t have it. Yet here I am taking up guitar and massacring “Smoke on the Water” like any beginning fourteen year old (and yes, they still do). Only, of course, I’m a looong way from fourteen, when such things might be considered part of the normal course of events. There’s nothing normal or natural about what I’m doing. So why am I doing it?

Because I’m a writer. Continue reading