Sorry to only get to this now. Woke up very early to deal with front yard. If it were simple mowing would have kicked son who is staying with us for three weeks awake and gotten him to do it, but there was weeding and stuff that needed done.
It was a singularly unproductive morning as all I did was the front yard. Never mind. More tomorrow.
Then there was laundry sorting to do which is done on my bed, and therefore must be done within 24 hours of changing the bedspread, because otherwise all the clean clothes acquire a thin patina of Greebo fur.
And no, Greebo isn’t happy with me. He’s been patiently herding me office-ward all morning and I keep escaping to do these things that mustn’t be necessary, since I don’t do them every day.
And in case you wonder why I’m giving you the “deeds of the day”. My grandmother used to relate everything she’d done every day when anyone showed up. As a kid I remember thinking it was a peculiar habit. I still think it’s a peculiar habit, but when I was “just” a housewife and aspiring writer, I’d find myself doing the same thing to anyone who showed up, or to Dan when he came home from work, so I finally understood why she did it.
Housework is such a peculiar conjunction of small and frankly boring tasks and things that become undone as soon as you do them, that it’s astonishing how the time flies by and you look around and go “Where the heck did the morning/afternoon/evening go?” And nothing to show for it. So you list it to reassure yourself, to tell yourself you’re wroth something, and not just frittering away your life in useless stuff every day, stuff no one notices.
Because that’s the other peculiar thing of housework: no one notices it until it’s not done. I think the first time my husband realized the particular load of work I was lifting was when I was very ill with pneumonia 23 years ago. Because I was in the hospital for two weeks, even though we had babysitters at home looking after the boys, who did things like feed the kids and do the dishes, he saw how all the other stuff went to hell on a slow schedule, and realized the amount of things I did every day. Since when he has not said anything about “you’re home all day, couldn’t you do x?”
Now he is home a lot of the time, he gets a worried expression as I get up from the desk to go put a load of laundry in, or whatever. I know he thinks I could fly a lot higher/faster without that particular burden. And I get it. Truly, I do. He used to suggest I get someone to do things (before aforementioned series of … unfortunate events) but my problem (back then) is that I am one of those people who cleans for the cleaning lady, and then after the cleaning lady. In the times I’ve had cleaners (mostly due to being ill) I’ve had ONE who cleaned better than I (and did it all with then one-year-old Marshall on her hip.)
My daughter in law says she tries to do something everyday that won’t be undone in a week. I’ve been trying to adopt the same habit, with the something everyday more often than not being something. The something lately is mostly short stories, because I’d made a lot of commitments before the year went crazy. I found I’d done 45k words of various things in the last week. Now it’s time to turn my attention to novels, because short stories are nice (and honestly mostly I do them for people I like, though none of them has failed to pay me at least what they’d pay in traditional publishing, but they’re piddly payments, not nearly enough to pick up from the series of unfortunate incidents earlier this year. So.
So, novels it will be. First I finish Deep Pink. (The next one is already loud and it starts with “I owed a favor to the Loch Ness Monster.” It will probably be called “Dark Beer.” Maybe. Anyway…. I need to finish it, then swing on to Alien Curse. I figured I had the wrong main protag, so it was like trying to wrench something into position, which didn’t want to fit. Former main protag to become infuriating love interest. Some words salvaged. Not sure how many yet.
After that it’s A Well Inlaid Death (Dyce Dare) and Witch’s Daughter (Witchfinder) and Blood Royale (Vampire Musketeers.) In between there will be a shortish novel called Another Rhodes which is a mystery with a cyborg detective in the far future. My plan is to interlard (totally a thing) Rhodes and Magis in between the heftier works. Though why I’m calling Dyce hefty, heaven only knows.
Other things are planned, including alternate history. Let me see how far I can run, and if the health thing is permanently on the mend, and keep me in your prayers in that regard. My goal is to fill up your to-be-read lists and drive you a little insane(r).
Which is the other reason I bring up the unending list of household chores.
Look, they have to be done. And I’m faster and more adept at them than Dan, who at any rate has a full time job and MUST find time to write, but we’re not sure where. It’s just that right now I can’t even consider hiring someone, even if I’d settle for someone who dusts and vacuums only. And the only way to change that is to write like a demon.
So I list the deeds of day mostly in frustration, because I was not at the keyboard producing words and making Greebo happy.
This too shall pass. Like a hurricane or perhaps a kidney stone, but it shall pass.
Until then, I just have to write. Which is what I’ll be doing after I publish this and until Hun’s dinner (at place we had Hunsgiving, probably now about 10 years back?) at 4:30 or 5 or thereabouts. And for those who checked their calendar, no, it is not in fact the first Saturday of the month.
Having dealt with moving son in temporarily and having our life turned upside down three days before Saturday, we were — Dan and I — blissfully unaware what day of the month it was. Curiously we felt there was something we should be doing, so we went to the botanic gardens to see the sunset. But we never remembered it was our day for dinner with the fans.
And yes, I know, politics is crazy right now, but honestly, I’m trying to stay away from the blogs and get paying work done (which requires fortitude like you wouldn’t believe, my being a political junky. But I think in terms of my addiction, politics increasingly are like bad drugs. I think these are cut with muriatic acid and sooner or later will eat all our faces. So I’m trying to discipline myself to only check them in the evening. I can’t tell you how hard this is on a nervous system trained to “you have to check, to know if you’re going to run into a mess on your way out and/or they’re coming for you.”
But if I go check politics, nothing will get done. And it must get done.
Anyway. So. I go write now. I have three and a half hours to lay down words, with brief interruptions for laundry.