Tighten Up

Ah, reality officially slapped me in the face this morning. Yesterday–while my first day back in the real world–I was still kind of in the Festival Bubble; reality didn’t seem quite real. Getting up at six this morning to come to work for a twelve hour day? Shit got real. I should have gone to bed at ten last night; instead I waited until eleven, which wasn’t the smart thing to do. I am not sleepy this morning, nor am I tired, but I am also not completely awake, either.

Heavy heaving sigh. I suppose tonight I shall have to try to go to bed early, and break this cycle once and for all.

There are, of course, worse things.

I am hoping to have a productive week, and next week I am hoping that I am going to start my increased and enhanced workouts at the gym as I attempt to get myself back into tip-top physical condition. I also intend to make a dentist appointment, get my bloodwork done, and see about getting another eye appointment; I feel like I already can’t see as well with the glasses I bought last year, which is endlessly annoying. Only this time, I think I am going to get a prescription for contact lenses–progressive ones, at that–because I can always get the prescription refilled at Costco after I exhaust my vision benefits. Work. That. System.

This week I want to edit three chapters of my secret project, write two chapters of the new Scotty, and finish two short stories–at least the first drafts. A friend of mine suggested to me this past weekend that I should put together a collection of my dark stories–crime and horror–and you know, I think I might actually have enough stories already to pull together as a collection, plus might have to write a couple of new ones. It’s a worthwhile project, methinks, to try to pull together. And I do like to write short stories, I just don’t think I’m very good at them–they certainly are harder for me (in a different way) than writing novels. The two stories I am working on are “The Terrortorium” (which was originally “Happyland”, but I really disliked that title) and “Quiet Desperation.” (Of course, the first is a rewrite and the second is an entirely new story, ergo–more fun to work on, and more difficult, but in a different way.)

I find myself writing, or at least thinking about writing, about writers more frequently these days. I’ve tried to avoid that trope (although Stephen King has written about writers a lot, and has done so extremely well) for most of my career, but I find myself going that way more and more lately. It’s something I am incredibly familiar with, for one thing, and I also know a lot of writers (not that I want to write about people I know, of course). I think the first time I wrote about a writer was in my short story “Annunciation Shotgun,” and since then I’ve kind of created a writer character who’s kind of a stand-in for me in some ways; he was the narrator of my story “An Arrow for Sebastian,” and I kind of used him again in both The Orion Mask and Garden District Gothic (Jerry Channing is his name). I find myself sometimes thinking about short stories and novels about writers, and I default to him…I even have an idea for a stand-alone novel about him. So…we shall see. Even “Quiet Desperation” is about a writer–although most definitely not Jerry.

Not sure what that’s all about, but there you have it.

And now, back to the spice mines.

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