A writer's life is all about watching and listening, thinking and feeling.
I love being an observer of life, but that comes with a drawback. It can get distracting.
Witness this date I couldn't help but notice in one of my local pubs this week.
I was trying to get on with some proper work (writing an exercise on dialogue for my teaching this summer), but found the couple next to me far more diverting.
I won't include a picture this time, for obvious reasons, but thought I'd set out my observations as a list of the good and the bad about the date -
Good - the couple have unfolded their arms. Bad - it's to start playing on their phones.
they've made eye contact at last .... to begin glaring at each other.
they've found something of mutual interest .... it's the menu.
they've finally started talking .... to have a row.
she's smiled at last .... because he's dropped some sauce on his shirt.
he's smiled at last .... at another woman.
he's smiled again .... because she's burnt her mouth on some food.
they've discovered another mutual interest .... it's alcoholism.
he's finally looking happier .... because she's gone to the loo.
she's looking happier too .... because she's gone to the loo.
they've made physical contact at last .... to have a fight.
Ok, the last one was a joke, but as for the rest...
Just like a police officee, a writer's lot is not always a happy one, but that's the job.
And it certainly gave me an idea for the exercise in dialogue.
So very much can be said without a single word.