Existentialist Googlemapping

July 5, 2010

I haven’t been doing as many posts lately because of a few interesting twists and turns in life that have landed me squarely on the corner of Where the Heck? and Now What? Among them:

Point A: I’ve been working on a novel, all the live-long day, for the past seven weeks. Now, my writer friends hear that and say, “You finished a novel in seven weeks?” When they look like they’d like to bash my head in with the nearest New York Times bestseller, I remind them that my speedwriting is no guarantee of awesomeness. However, I do kind of like knowing two things about myself: I was once able to move across the country, from New York to San Francisco, in two weeks with only a suitcase and a box of books; and I can write a novel in under two months. If I can master a decent cornbread recipe, I think my life goals will have been met.

The thing about the novel is that I don’t know if it’s any good. I mean, I like it, but what the heck do I know? I gave it to my beloved agent last week, who is (hopefully) reading it right now. Will keep you posted on whether she’s going to recommend that I reconsider that medical claims job I talked about a few blogs ago.

Point B: Another interesting offering from life’s buffet is that my biological father and I are back on speaking terms after many, many (manymany) years. Well, actually, we’re back on writing terms; our rekindled relationship is taking place via email, which is good because we get to write about whatever we want to talk about with each other. It’s a baby step on the road to … who knows? And while friendly emails may not sound like much in the big scheme of things, for us it’s nothing short of a small, lovely miracle.

Point C: I’m having trouble sleeping. Now, this can have an upside; it’s brilliant for working out plot developments (see Point A). On the whole, though, it’s hell on the skin and the psyche. A lot of women my age talk about the onset of insomnia, which is not so fabulous and definitely not better than the way things used to be. My good buddy Pamela S. Booker, author of Dust: Murmurs and a Play, and I are fans of–nay, groupies for–the herbal supplement valerian. One funny-smelling capsule, and I’m off to a restful sleep. Usually. If I’ve got a lot on my mind, I might have to do a double. The only problem is I don’t want to take it every night and ruin its efficacy; Mom is so concerned about this she’ll only take half a capsule, with a backup of chamomile tea. The things we have to do just to get some decent shut-eye!

And yes, I’ve read the advice about cutting out all caffeine. Two issues: I like a tea-buzz in the morning (see “Point A,” novel, seven weeks, yadda yadda), and I’m so tired in the morning from the lack of sleep the night before that I need the tea-buzz. What’s a tea-addicted, grey-haired girl to do?

So, in conclusion . . . I have no idea what my conclusion is. Oh yeah! I’m feeling a little unsure about where life is going these days. My so-called midlife celebration is definitely feeling more crisis-y than when I was planning my surfing lessons. Then again, I am surfing; I’m riding the ups and downs and everything in between. And I guess there’s nothing wrong with feeling a little lost, because I get to see new things as I go along.

Cheers, dears, and I’ll write more often, if you’ll keep reading.

[Bugs Bunny art courtesy of Warner Bros.]


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