This morning I’m very cranky. For reasons I know but don’t want to get into (it’s a post in itself, and one I don’t want to deal with) I was up at two am and couldn’t sleep till four thirty am.
This morning I’m cranky and out of sorts and debating whether I should shower before getting in painting clothes and finishing painting the “decent looking but paper veneer library system” we bought last week, or just shower afterwards. Because I will need to shower afterwards.
Because I love showers, you know it’s just crankiness, and not wanting to relax (though admittedly if I relax I might never do anything, because I’m tired and cranky.)
Yesterday read myself into place on novel in progress, which has been dragging since January. There have been reasons for it, and I understood fully the reason I haven’t forced it. The last chunk was forced (eight weeks ago) and I realized I had three blind alleys in it, which had completely destroyed the plot I planned and left me floundering.
I’ve written … well… I’ve written and published something like 35 novels, not a bad reaction to them, unless politically motivated. So, it’s not lack of craft. As I told a friend this week, the craft never leaves you. And my subconscious knew I’d gone wrong in pushing and going to weird (and unexpected) twists, because … well, because none of it worked.
I don’t often go down bizarre sidelines that end in cul de sacs when plotting or writing. And my unexpected twists usually just add subplots or depth. So the book has been dragging because I haven’t been fully functional. (Even today, despite the tired, I’m more functional and less depressed than I’ve been in years. Maybe in 10 or 20 years. Part of this is the treatment of apnea, which I’ve probably had that long [it’s not even really weight related, though the weight doesn’t help. I have the lungs of a 5 year old child, due to infantile TB. So when you add lying down and even a little overweight — I’m more than that now, but wasn’t for many years — my O2 levels crawl in the basement. The apnea has only been treated for about 7 months, so the final recovery is still setting in.)
Frankly I haven’t been fully functional for twenty years. And that was the hypothyroidism. The entire span of my career has ranged from “profoundly difficult to write” to “okay to write but so tired.” Keep in mind this affects all action scenes because you can’t write them if you can’t live them in your head, because so tired. It affects other things too, like complex relationships.
Look, maybe that was a good thing. Up till 20 years ago I had a tendency to plots so complex you needed an ax to cut through them. Perhaps it was my puny craft then, or perhaps a mind that turns in on itself that made those impenetrable to readers. Who knows? At least the last twenty years have given me craft. I had to have it to function. But craft isn’t enough when you’re dragging, and I have built-in controls that stop me pushing when I’ll destroy the book if I do.
Anyway, now I see the problems and I think I can finish it, and get back on A schedule, hopefully relatively fast.
I can’t tell you why since January, since a lot of this is not mine to tell. (I know, but it’s still true.) And the parts that are would be of no interest at all to most of you.
Let’s say each year has its character and 2018 has been a year of “everything goes wrong/emerges me in turmoil/miraculously turns out WAY better than expected.”
Look, it beats 2015, the year of everything goes wrong and stays wrong and everything I need to do will take ridiculously long.
However a lot of it HAS been emotional turmoil. A lot of you will ping me expressing sorrow I’m sick, but I haven’t been sick as such. I had only one major infection, and that was May. Mostly I’ve been plunging into autoimmune due to stress. But I found a doctor who is helping me manage things, and I’m losing weight for first time in 10 years, which also helps.
Of course, losing weight takes time, because if I don’t walk 5 miles a day I don’t lose. Yes, I should learn to dictate, but so far I’m WAY too self-conscious and sound like a loon. OTOH I really am getting healthier. “Everyday in every way I’m getting better and better.” It’s actually true, I just had a long way to go.
Anyway, one of the hardest things to get over right now is “the years undone.” I wish I could have worked for the last twenty years with my full mind and my health.
Maybe things would be very different. Then again maybe I’d never have been published. Who can know.
Which is why I need to let go of the anger and make the best of what I have.
It’s not so bad. As a friend pointed out, I could be seventy and just coming out of the funk.
So… make the best of what you have.
And while at it: we were born, most of us, even those in their seventies, into a world infested with Marxist theories which lead to socialism national and international. This is bad enough, but they also corrupt the foundation and base of civilization.
It’s only in the last ten or twenty years we’ve had the means to start fighting back.
When you guys express despair, you’re doing what I’m doing when I say “but I lost close to twenty years, and I’m so old now, and exhausted by the fight of fiction.”
Take no counsel of your fears. It’s not our fault how the world got before we were born. A lot of it was the form of technology — mass manufacture — leading to mass production, mass reporting, mass entertainment.
Well, that’s changing and going smaller and more personal. The appeal of Marxism will wither too.
Sure, sure, they still have strength and we still have bottle necks in communications. But we’re ALSO still here.
Would I prefer we had got this ability to fight back earlier? Sure. But then again, like my having been healthier through my career so far, what bad things come with that? Because I guarantee some will.
This might not be the best of all possible worlds. It is the world we have. And it could be much worse.
We could have an easier battle. We also could have a much harder one.
Be not afraid. Go and build and love and create. Fight by being you as hard as you can.
Do the best you can NOW and throw away your regrets.
Take no counsel of your fears. Ignore the gibbering voice that says all is lost already. Nothing is ever fully lost, certainly not liberty and individualism so long as some people believe in them.
All you have is what you have now. Make the best of it.