Monday, June 11, 2012

Writer’s Limbo

By D.L. Jackson

I'm kind of at that in-between stage of wanting to write, and wanting to take a break from it. I usually will burn through several MS before I just can't focus, and finally throw my arms up and walk away for two or three weeks.

Often during that time I will go on a reading binge. This time, I’m unable to sit and read. Too much to do. My baby graduates next week and I have to set up for a big party. My granddaughter turns two and is coming up. I have to set up for a party for her too. I have to finish painting the house, which is also the way I hurt my knee. I was warned to stay off the ladder while on vacation, but did I listen? No. Too much to do, and I was feeling restless. To complicate things, I have to stay off my leg as much as possible, wear this ridiculous brace and keep it iced. The doctor says if I’m good, I won’t have to have surgery.

Sitting is a skill I need to work on. So in order to do as told. I grabbed my laptop, Chinese language CDs, icepack and psyched myself up to write. Should be easy. Right? What is it about being laid up that makes it hard to pull stories together? For once in my life I have an excuse to sit on my ass and do nothing but write, and I can’t.

I have multiple stories I want to work on, all at various stages and I start on one, only to find myself staring at the text, thinking about anything but what I'm writing. I’m waiting for a galley for a June 27th release, so until then.... Goes back to check email. No galley.

Off the icepack goes and I head outside. This is only after I nag my husband for over an hour to help me with planting some fruit trees that came in the mail. Bitching and snarling, he follows, because yes, he loves me that much.

With my bum knee, I couldn’t dig the hole, and I had to get them in the ground. So he drags the shovel and trees all over the yard until I find just the right spot. I've never heard such grumbling. He dug these little bitty holes. No manure or compost. *sighs* I tried to explain the need to go shopping for the good stuff, as my compost pile hasn’t broken down enough. He didn't buy the five dollar tree--ten dollar hole, theory. Looks like I'll be digging them back up and fixing myself when the knee starts to cooperate. At least the bare root trees are in the ground and I don’t have to worry about them.

So I paint my front doors red. It’s something I’ve been meaning to do for a couple months. Mistake. They have muttons. The muttons don’t come off without the glass and the inside of said muttons is white and hollow. Red paint has leaked under where I so carefully taped it off. It looks so bad I want to cry. So now I have half painted doors that need to go back to being white.

With one task complete and another I didn’t want to make worse, I still felt restless. Then I remembered my husband’s new riding lawn mower, shiny and green, sitting in the shed all lonely and neglected. Have I ever told you green is my favorite color, well next to red, it is.

The first commandment of the tool shed god: Thou shalt not touch the John Deere. This is also followed by; thou shalt not touch the power saw, cordless drills or tool box. Thou can however, operate the push mower, shovel and rake. And the kitchen bitch says thou can operate a washcloth and dish soap. Snort.

Sheesh, he had a turkey. What happened to what's mine is yours, and what's yours is mine? He reverted to a three year-old and started spouting mine, mine, mine. Needless to say, I was kicked off the John Deere. He's just lucky I'm a gimp right now. *Eyeing gas can and waiting for opportunity to race said forbidden John Deere around the lawn.* You have to sleep sometime husband of mine, and it does have a headlight! Wonder if the John Deere takes jet fuel. I mean, the racing cars do. Right?

Then I went and worked on my flower gardens. Except, I already tended them 
and they look good. Really good. Got out the craft paint and touched up one of my gnomes. Then I lopped a few roses back, for the sake of doing something. Went inside, typed a sentence on a story, and got distracted by solitaire. Played enough to know, I suck and just shouldn't. Read a novella, went back outside to inspect the gardens. Knee swelled up. Back inside to ice it. One more sentence.


Gah. This game is not for me.
Then I hear sheep. No, not a solitary “baa” but more like a chorus line of “baas”. The fence across the road did not hold them and those baas are coming from my yard, and my perfectly tended flower gardens. Up I jump, limping out into the yard like a mad woman. They pay the gimp little notice, so I grab a rolled up newspaper and chase them out of the flowers. They divide and flank me. Back into the flowers. I circle around hollering. My husband comes out and begins to laugh. “Get them out of my yard!”

“Ahoy, matie.”

Okay, this brace does make me walk like a pirate, but really? Really? You’re just getting even because I made you help me plant the trees!

He goes back inside. Oh you did not! Just as I charge for the door, the farmer comes along with his bucket of grain. The sheep leave following him like the Pied Piper of mutton. Disgusted with the chewed flowers and non-helpful husband, I go back inside.
Glare at husband.


“You could have helped me.”

“You were doing fine.”


I plug in my headphones and pop in a Chinese speaking CD. I now know how to say,”I’d like a drink.”
I’d really like a drink. Wa shung, hua e-dee-r dom she! Make it a double.
Bah, I suck at this game—and for all I know; I just said something really naughty in Chinese.

So here I am.

Think I'm ready for down time before the next release on June 27th. But what to do on that down time??? *Glances out window and eyes John Deer.* “Shiver me timbers. I see an unmanned vessel in need of a captain.”
Arrrrrr! Batten down the hatches.
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D L Jackson said...

ROFL. Nice visuals, Val.

VS Morgan said...

Great blog! Hope your knee feels better soon. Happy birthday!

Jessica E. Subject said...

LOL When we lived out in the country, I used to beg to ride our John Deere mower. Except when I was pregnant. The combination of my heat and that from the mower was too much. I know that limbo stage. Usually reading works for me, or I could get to the pile of clean laundry that needs to be folded.

I hopebyou have a wonderful birthday and that the sheep stay out of your garden. :-)

Alexa said...

LOL! Too funny! Hope your knee heals quickly & you avoid surgery!

Zee Monodee said...

I can't believe you're not in front of the TV watching tons of movies and TV shows with super hunks in them! That's what I'd do... or watch rugby (hot, big, sweaty guys running and bashing one another... Hmm, bliss!)

Hope your knee heals asap, and that you manage to ride the restless edge! xoxo

D L Jackson said...

I have that party cloud hanging over me. After all that grumbling, the husband went out and bought me two new trees for my birthday and cleared a whole area for them.Then he planted them.

Ah, love. I'd much rather watch him. *grins* He's still hot after all these years. LOL But don't tell him I said that.

And the sheep got out again yesterday. This time he was my knight in shining armor.

D L Jackson said...

Congrats to Alexa. You are the winner of a e-copy of Rebel Souls. Please send me your email addy so I can send you your prize.

dlareejackson 1 (at) gmail (dot) com

Please remove spaces and change the at to @ and dot to .

Barbara Elsborg said...

Ah if only we had one of those mowers!! sadly we don't, so husband has to push the machine around the lawn. They look good fun though!! Hope your knee feels better soon, Dawn. Have a great party for your big baby and a lovely 2nd birthday for the little one!