Floyd Skloot has been nominated eight times for the Oregon Book Award. His books include In The Shadow of Memory, 2003 winner of the Sarah Winnemucca Award for Creative Nonfiction, and The Evening Light, 2001 winner of the Hazel Hall Award for Poetry.
I asked Floyd to describe a good writing day. He responded:
A good writing day for Floyd Skloot often has nothing to do with putting words on paper or on a computer screen. Because my health makes it impossible to count on actually working on any given day, because the essential truth of my writing life for the last twenty years—since a viral attack on my brain—is fragmentation, discontinuity, and compromise of such basic functions as memory, concentration, word-finding capacity, abstract thinking, I’ve had to learn that writing for me must be a matter of capturing fragments of thought or disconnected ideas, images, or memories, filing them, and discovering in time where they lead me, how they cohere. So a good writing day is a often a day containing times of contemplation; the emergence of a few provocative, stirring fragments; or preparation from focused reading. And some days, when I have an hour or so of time when I can do the actual work of composition, it feels as though the less obviously productive days have in fact been the days of hardest “work.”