Week 5: What the F@@@ am I doing?

And why did I just censor the word Fuck?

Catering to some sensibilities, I suppose.  This is where I quote Polonius to myself: “To thine own self be true,” remind myself to follow said advice, and add to my list of essay ideas: “Write essay on self-truth and foul language.   Some misled notion of freedom thing.”

I’m a list-maker.  You will see. And look– the to-do list just grew.

You may have noticed that this is a day late.  K.K posted hers yesterday.  Dutifully.  On schedule.  Even though, mind you, she is the one who was on the precipice of quitting this week.  This is what I came home to:

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So, of course I said no.  Don’t be silly.  No one’s quitting.

She didn’t definitively commit either way, but she did say something that suggested that she was just changing the rules for herself. Which is fine.  I mean, Like she said about relationships, I think we may not have broken up yet, but I’m not sure and I am going to keep smiling nice and step light until she sends me a story to read and then I’ll know that yes, she is indeed still in.

That’s one more thing to the list.  Keep K.K in this.  I need my partner in crime! (You hear me, K.K. Fox? Don’t you quit on me, and all that.)

Since the entire burden of story a week, plus real life, plus some very dramatic intrigue/situations in my theater life was getting to be a bit much, I figured a little order to life was…er..in order. Get a routine going, you know.  Organize my day. So, I started morning exercise. A nice little jog/walk combo.  Except it turned out to be mostly walking, listening to music, and thinking about stories. I tried running, but it was distracting.  All that pounding on the pavement in the quiet of the morning.  Unnecessary.  Besides,  my imagination already does more running than I do and only one of us can exercise that hard in a day, thank you very much.

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But hey, that goes on the list.  Keep working out. (Article idea: delusion and exercise)

Meanwhile, there is that whole business of submissions, revisions, and that little thing called reading.  I have spent the week checking off things:

  • Finalize script for play-Check
  • Chase down people for rehearsal times-Check
  • Wonder why you are making your life extra crazy- Check
  • Prep for teaching workshop-
  • Find recommenders- Check.
  • Apply to Sewanee- Well, the application is half-filled.
  • Write statement of purpose- Check
  • Write second statement of purpose for fellowship you will not get-check
  • Send out submissions- Check. Sort of.Ugh.
  • Tweet stuff- Done and done.
  • Finish story- Yeah, about this one.  I have 3/4 of a story.  It may either be one I absolutely love, or on that is such utter shit that I will be embarassed to have thought of it.  But so far, I am more excited than the protagonist and I think that’s a problem.
  • Write blog post- um. yeah.  So.
  • Read. Finish “The GoldFinch.”- Ugh. Trying.
  • Enter a challenge entering rehab program-

This last one, this is  serious.  I am also signed up for the GoodReads reading challenge.  It’s not a whopping number or anything, 62 I think, but really did I forget I have kids, work, visitors (yes, fam’s visiting), a social life in Dubai (it’s not normal how many nights a week I go out), and my improv/theater commitments.I repeat my earlier question: What the fuck am I doing?

And yet, as I was in the middle of this anxiety-ridden week, struggling to write stories and read books, I received a story acceptance. That sweet word: Yes!  That perfect, perfect word that makes all the pain go away for just a moment. Although mind you, I am so used to rejections now that I opened the email and sent it straightaway into the rejection folder until the editor of the thing emailed again to ask if I had received his last email and did I have a response.

Grow Thicker skin. Check.

I miss the simpler days when writing first turned from habit to obsession.  It was a 15-year old me sitting around hillsides, looking out at the world, and composing what I thought were Frost-like poems followed up by snarky opinion columns I sent to the local teen magazine. There was a lot of thinking, and not much planning, and a lot of  doing, and just being. That, just being, is key, i think.  No matter what the challenge, how daunting. Just being, until it works itself out.

Oooh. Let me put that on the list.

Sitting on hillside. !992.  Convent of Jesus and Mary, Murree. Senior Year.
Sitting on hillside. 1992. Senior Year. Convent of Jesus and Mary, Murree. Pakistan.
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