I believe it was in Stephen King’s memoir On Writing that I first heard of the band The Rock Bottom Remainders. I knew that King was passionate about music–specifically American rock music. It’s all over his books and I had heard that he was working on a musical with John Cougar Mellencamp.
Anyway, hearing about the band he occasionally played in was one more thing that made me want to start writing. I remember Ray Bradbury saying that money was the absolute worst motivation for a writer–and that it would rarely produce the best possible writing.
The idea of actually being able to make money hadn’t even entered my mind yet, but the idea of being able to play in a band with (these are the current members)…
- Mitch Albom
- Dave Barry
- Ray Blount Jr.
- Greg Iles
- Kathi Komen Goldmark
- Stephen King
- Matt Groening
- Amy Tan
- Kelley Pearson
- Scott Turow
…was simply too awesome to even imagine. But I tried. I was already a skilled guitar player, so I knew that holding my own would not be any sort of issue.
But how to get them to notice me? Well, I had to write. And write well. And get published and get noticed and all that jazz.
And so I began to write. And the more I wrote, the more I enjoyed writing. And the more I enjoyed writing, the more I forgot about why I had ever started in the first place.
It is my favorite thing: to begin thinking, imagining, and writing, and to lose track of everything. Time passes so quickly that it the term barely even applies. When the work is going well it is like stepping into a time machine, even if it’s only a journey of one hour.
So Remainders, just to let you know, I am still interested and I’m still writing with ever-increasing success and results.