Leaving My Mood on the Page
A dear friend asked if I was feeling blue.
My hubby said I seemed grumpy.
So I took stock.
Am I blue?
Am I grumpy?
It’s holiday time and I have a house full of puppies! How could I be blue or grumpy?
I’m not. I’m just in a non-writing funk.
When I’m not writing, I lose track of myself. My brain is jumpy and cluttered. I forget things. Even reading is hard because I struggle to focus.
The bottom line is that I need to write. I have to write. Even as a kid I had this problem. I filled journal after journal with all manner of angsty, boring drivel. But it served a purpose. Journaling allowed me to empty out my busy head onto a page. It helped me let go of emotions that were strangling me. And it let me sort through what was really going on. These days if I’m wrestling with an issue, I find myself reaching for a pen or my laptop. I’ll write myself through it.
As Julia Cameron says, “Writing connects the self with the self.” This week I think the problem is simply that my tether is slipping a bit.
But it’s break time. Time to focus on family, friends, food. Time to chill. And, hey, we’ve got puppies, so there’s that, too.
Still, I miss my writing. I miss the energy that comes from working on a story. I love escaping inside the head of a character. I love living a life in my dreams, even one I wouldn’t pick. Being so ever-present in my real life is exhausting and nowhere near as interesting as the life in my head.
But right now, for today, there’s no point in writing anything beyond a blog post or a journal entry since solid, uninterrupted time will be in scarce supply in the coming week.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m grateful. I’m all kinds of grateful. My cup is so full I’m drinking from my saucer most days.
So I’ll try to shake off the blue attitude and the grumpy fog. I’ll journal my way to a better mood or maybe I’ll toss this blog post out into the wide web of this world. I’ll leave my grumpies right here and go find the eggnog.
#amwriting #writing #drinkingfrommysaucer
What’s with all the updates?
Microsoft has been bugging me all week to update office.
What if I was happy with the old office which seems like the new office since I only updated that one last year when they strong-armed me into Word 365?
But they wouldn’t let it rest. They nagged me every time I started up the computer.
For a while I simply didn’t turn my computer off. That’ll show them.
But this backfired because the poor old machine got so bogged down with a week’s worth of my surfing and snooping and scratching out rough copies of essays that may never see the light of day, it eventually flipped out, tossed out a few PG curse words, threw up its hands, and froze. (Okay, maybe it just froze, but it seemed like it was emoting something at that point, or, maybe that was me.)
Doesn’t it seem like the big guys always win?
I was left with no choice but to give it free rein to update all my office products and now I’m looking at this UNFAMILIAR word screen and I don’t like it.
Maybe I’m becoming a curmudgeon. It just looks funny. Wrong font, too much gray, and the least they could have done was remove those stupid bird silhouettes in the upper right hand corner. Why are they there? It’s just weird.
I haven’t opened excel yet. I’m afraid of what they may have done. I have such a paper-thin grasp of excel as it is, and if they’ve gone and rearranged the whole shebang, I’m screwed.
Change is uncomfortable. I guess that’s the bottom line. Unless you’re uncomfortable already, then change can be good. #FortuneCookieLogic
I wonder how much the designers got paid to re-design office (again). I wonder if entire groups of people in suits sit around and debate fonts and the formatting for Heading 2 and the silly birds in the corner.
They probably have lunch catered.
It seems like a lot of jobs come down to rearranging the furniture. It may not be better, but it feels like we’ve done something.
Sometimes that’s all that matters.
The Queen of the Copyedits
Reviewing copyedits is one of my favorite parts of publishing a book.
The manuscript for my second book arrived via email yesterday with the copyedits for me to review. It makes me feel like a princess writer. Really. I get to go through the manuscript and accept or reject the changes suggested by the copyeditor.
It’s like sitting on my throne and using my scepter in judgment.
Not really. But I do feel pretty powerful.
When I’m Not Her came back last spring with its copyedits, I was horrified.
So much red. On every page. Wow, I am a horrible writer.
But as I got into the marks I realized that they weren’t changing my story, they were only making it clearer for the reader. Nora (my copyeditor) was making me sound so much better.
I love Nora.
I’ve never met her, but as I read her comments and corrections, I decided she was the BEST person in the world. Without Nora, my writing was crap
Okay, maybe that’s a stretch, but at the time all I could think was, “Thank God for Nora.”
I found myself talking to her as I worked. I feel like we are great friends. She’s been inside my mind and seem my most embarrassingly stupid mistakes. And yet she keeps going (yeah, she’s getting paid for this, but indulge me). She doesn’t give up on me or my writing. That’s my kind of friend.
And she’s brilliant. Obviously. (I like smart people.)
So when it was time for a copyeditor for Girls Weekend (my second book – I know, I know – crazy), I asked my publisher if Nora could do it again.
And today I’m sitting with the manuscript of Girls Weekend getting to know Nora all over again. And I’m in love once again. I can tell, after only one chapter, that this manuscript was a lot more work for her. Sorry, Nora.
Course one of the things I like about cleaning my house (when I actually clean it) is that my work is so necessary. The house is filthy and after I’ve scrubbed at a counter or a floor, the difference is remarkable. My work is justified and rewarding.
That’s probably how Nora felt as she edited Girls Weekend. Not that she told me. But I can tell.
We’re great friends, me and Nora.