# of pages written: 3
# of days left to write 1st draft: 126
After tutoring this evening, I took a walk on Nauset Beach. The sun was going down behind the dunes, casting a gentle glow on the flat, blue water. The moon was a thin, white wafer in the sky, and every so often a string of puffy clouds would appear and move swiftly out to sea.
I walked in the sand, still cool and damp from this morning’s rain, as little sea birds waddled in front of me, leaving triangle tracks from their webbed, orange feet. Two dark seals glided through the waves, and I stopped to watch them. One of seals bobbed his head out of the water, and a silver fish tail flashed at his mouth then disappeared. Below me, an older coupled walked hand-in-hand along the surf. They looked up at me. “Did you see him eating?” the man asked, making a hand-to-mouth gesture.
“Yeah!” I nodded and laughed.
I continued on down the beach, passing a large, extended family of parents and children. The adults stretched out in low canvas chairs, drinking beers and watching as their bathing-suited children ran in the sand, throwing a Nerf football and shrieking with delight. I looked at the woman closest to me. Her hair was pulled back in a sun-bleached, stubby ponytail, and she smiled at the man next to her with this happy-tired-wonderful smile that just about broke my heart.
I kept on walking, my feet sinking into the wet sand. I tried to enjoy the paper-thin moon and the glassy-blue water and the cool breeze coming off the water. I tried to feel excited about going home and writing about this beautiful moment. But I felt somber. Maybe because it was the end of the day. Or the end of the summer. But mostly, I think, it was because I was alone.
Of course I want to write a good novel, and of course I’d like to get it published. And sure it’d be nice to go on book tours or get a job as a creative writing professor at a college. But sometimes writing can get very lonely, and it’s ironic, because I write as a way to share myself with others.
What I really want more than anything else – more than a novel or a book deal or a Pulitzer prize – is to be out on the beach on an evening like this one, sitting in a low canvas chair next to a man I love, drinking beer and watching our children play in the sand. I don’t want to always be thinking about getting home and writing about my experiences so I can share them with others. I want someone to be at my side, experiencing things with me, in the very moment that they happen.