We think that we start our stories at the beginning.
This isn't true.
Usually we start somewhere in the middle. It's not something we mean to do or even think about very much.
Cole wasn't sure. For one thing, when we start, we rarely appreciate the full arc of a story, especially our own. That, and it's hard - as a matter of writing and thinking, and even as a matter of geometry - to sketch out a story from one point to another, when the end is unknown. This much Cole knew. Maybe it's easier to see the end from the middle than from the beginning? Cole wondered. Maybe we forget our beginnings. Or we are in a rush to get to the end.
Of course, none of these thoughts were helping. With the blank page in front of him, his mind cycled round and round: "Where to begin? - Where to begin? - Where to begin?"
"Well," thought Cole as he sat up and straightened his back, "let's get on with it."
He picked up his pen, hesitated and then wrote: "Where to begin?"
Another pause. And then music. His mind had drifted to song lyrics, to that odd REM power anthem, "Begin the Begin." Birdie in hand. Miles Standish proud. "The mythology begins the begin. . ."
Not helpful. Cole sighed. Not helpful at all. It wasn't even the right song.
He put the pen down.