Even when it’s only a draft the pleasure of finishing a piece of writing should not be underestimated. I wonder the extent to which other types of artists experience this feeling. The intricacy of a piece of writing seems to contribute to the pleasure—as if one had put a puzzle together—but in this sense film, dance and opera, with their multiple participants and muses, are more complex. I also appreciate that a writer’s end product is tangible—a piece of paper, often many pieces—but of course here painters and sculptors have more to show.
In any case, it’s a very nice feeling—addicting—though, as with many addictive activities and substances, the high does not last long. One turns to the next piece. Soon there is the desperation to escape the confusion, inarticulateness and incompletion. There is the thrill of making new combinations of words and images—one’s very own ideas! (It’s a bit like the pleasure of defecation.) And, of course, there are fantasies of worldly success.