I don’t know what happened to this week. Every day, I’ve had something or other going on, but yesterday…

It started out at 6:30, getting the kids up and shoving them out the door so I could get my galleys sent in, finally. I was done by 8:30, and then it was time to write.

Now, I don’t know what people picture in their heads when they think about a writer at work. But I’ll bet this probably isn’t it:

  1. Set to work, carving a “motivation” thread out of first chapter because it sucked. Delete and repair. Lots of forehead scratching, grumbling, and time outs to rest forehead on desktop while predicting all the landmines I’ve just planted for myself later in the story. This takes one hour.
  2. I head to the kitchen for some iced tea, and whimper at the mess. So I load up the dishwasher, try to find the bottom of the school-paper-depository that is the counter in our foyer, then swear while throwing boots, mittens and shoes back into their respective homes for the forty-fourth time this week. Then I remember I need to wash towels, so I run downstairs and get that started. This takes half an hour.
  3. I sit back down at the computer to read chapter 2 so I can figure out how badly it’s screwed now that I’ve carved that bit from chapter one. But then I begin to wonder what crack-head wrote the first four pages of chapter 2 in passive voice. Something has to be done, so I decide to lop out those four pages, and hoist the timeline forward a ways to just avoid the problem altogether. This takes half an hour.
  4. I’m reading the rest of chapter two, highlighting the necessary parts so I don’t lose the core points. I’m interrupted by a spectacular scraping noise, followed by a crash. The cats have knocked over the door left propped in the back entryway that STILL hasn’t been hung in child #3’s room. Booger and Princess Moo are pretty freaked out, so I spend twenty minutes sling-shotting their toys around to make them happy. These things take one hour.
  5. I’m in the kitchen, so naturally the dishwasher has to be unloaded. And since I’m nearby, I attack the foyer counter again. Only this time, Booger decides he’d like to jump from stool to stool (where I’ve been stacking the stuff I need to put away elsewhere), sending papers and gloves and books flying in every direction. I pick them all up and dump them back on the counter, then run downstairs, put the towels in the dryer, run back upstairs to swear while grabbing dirty laundry from kids’ rooms, run BACK downstairs and throw it in the wash. I’ve now wasted an entire half hour.
  6. It’s back to the computer, and this time, I’m determined not to get sidetracked. Of course, I now have no idea what I was doing before, so I begin again by reading through chapters two and three. It’s obvious major surgery is needed in act one, because the second act is written in a much smoother, easier style. So I sit there, head in my hands, for at least half an hour, scolding myself for doing everything the hard way even though I know better, and contemplating a career as a walmart greeter. This is poor motivation, as greeters make way more money than I do, but I go back to work anyway, because that’s what I do. This time I make it an entire two hours before I realize I’d better get ready to pick up child #2 from school.
  7. It’s butt cold outside, so I run out to start the car fifteen minutes early, then race back to the computer to cram in a few more minutes’ work. Naturally, since I have no time, the “fix” ideas are coming hard and fast. I look at the clock. I should have left a minute ago, so I do this weird sort of pinball thing, arguing with myself. I know I should go back and jot down the stuff in my head, because God knows I won’t remember by the time we get home. But I’m late. So I walk a few steps one direction, then a few steps back until I’m finally so late I have no choice but to go.
  8. I pick up the kid. Go to the grocery store, unload and put everything away. Child #2’s best friend calls and wants him to come over, so we get back in the car, drag him over there, then run home again to start assembling the lasagna I promised I’d make for dinner. Halfway through I realize I never remembered to eat anything that day, which explains why I’m starting to get rather crabby.
  9. Throw the lasagna in the oven, glare at the husband who’s just come home to dump his work stuff on the foyer counter and complain about the mess in there. Put “The Mummy” in for child #3 so he’ll stop talking my ears off about Egyptian geography, head back to the computer and try to remember all that stuff I should’ve written down. As you might imagine, I’ve now forgotten every last bit of it. But it doesn’t matter, because now it’s time to go pick up child #1.
  10. I grab the MP3 player and blare Steve Vai during the drive. Sit in parking lot for ten minutes, waiting, then shuffle to something less attitude-y because child #1 is finally getting in the car. I ask, “Did you get all your stuff done?” “No.” “Why not?” “Because the study guy didn’t know how to do my math, and no one else did, either.” Great. So now I get to help with homework, but how bad can it be? We get home, and by now, I’m getting REALLY crabby because I’m starving, but child #2 still needs to be retrieved, so I make sure #1 and #3 are set up with dinner before I trudge out once more to fetch the alpha larvae.
  11. He’s shut his cellphone off, so I have to wait a good ten minutes for him to get his keister moving. We get home, I finally eat something, then watch part of National Treasure I with child #1 — cleaning the living room and signing a ton of stuff for #2 at same time — until I make the mistake of asking, “Hey, didn’t you have homework?”
  12. Child #1 snarls and drags out math homework. Not too bad. It’s algebra, and I pwn algebra. We finish one page, and then she confesses that not only has she got five more pages to do, but a crap-ton of journaling that absolutely POSITIVELY has to be in by tomorrow because it’s the end of the quarter.
  13. After the hysterics subside, we settle down to work. It’s 11:48 before I’ve bullied her through the last of it.
  14. I send her off to bed and collapse into the computer chair. There’s no way on earth I’ll remember my plans from earlier, so I run downstairs to rip the Riverdogs CD onto my flashdrive, load it onto my work computer, and listen to the Big House solo no less than 9 times while writing a War and Peace-sized blog post about nothing. :batlash:

The sad thing is, today will be much like yesterday. God help anyone who sets anything on that foyer counter.


5 Responses

  1. hi .. we love you..

  2. does thou cell phone have a recorder? While I HATEHATEHATE listening to my own voice, if I were faced with the dilemma of having an answer yet not time to write it down but rather face forgetting it, because it’s how it happens, I’d record some mental notes to jerk it back into recollection.

    I always think of wonderful plot devices while a) in the shower or b) RIGHT before I go to sleep, when I’m warm and half dozing and can’t be arsed to get up/write things down.

    As for the foyer? Good luck. And Happy Friday to you. *Pries up delete and backspace button*

  3. :flowers: Because I feel your pain, sweetie. Honestly, this is my life only mine are a little older than yours. Hang in there and back to the :hemi:


  4. lol I just pulled my Riverdogs out of storage a few weeks ago. Partly inspired by the Rob Lamothe acoustic thingy on You Tube (which I see you have recently unearthed too).

    Now I just gotta get Extreme’s Pornografitti again. Lost it in an unfortunate car burglary incident some years ago. =( ….hole-hearted….hole-hearted!

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