I have my cup of tea. I have ideas. And I have an apology. Well, more an explanation as I doubt any of you have been spending time thinking, “Wonder how’s Sue getting on with that writing thing?” and “I’ll be so ticked off if she’s not doing what she said she would, even if she’s not blogging about it.” Anyway, I haven’t been writing. I haven’t even been…gasp…reading for over a week.
Shortly before writing that post on September 28th I’d been to visit my parents. It was Mom’s birthday and we had a short-and-sweet celebration. Mom had a cold so we didn’t stay too long or get too close. I came home, read, blogged, and then sat on the couch feeling like all the energy was being quickly sapped from my body. My throat felt more and more sore and I couldn’t keep my eyes open. No way had I caught this from Mom and become ill so quickly. Could it be related in some way to the spider bites I was seen for at the health clinic at work on Friday? Don’t know but I took myself off to bed and tried to rest.
Several days, lots of TLC from husband, and a couple of doctor’s visits, lab work, and x-rays later, I learned that they weren’t spider bites around my back; they were shingles. And more than likely, this lowered my immune system leaving me exposed to catch a bug of some sort. It’s still unclear if the nastier stuff I experienced (like not being able to keep food down accompanied by a crushing headache) was a result of what I’d caught or a side effect of medication. In any case, I spent days moving from bed to couch to recliner, which was really the only place I got any good rest. And really calling it, “good” rest is like saying ramen noodles makes a good dinner. It doesn’t. It wasn’t. I digress.
During that week I didn’t visit my keyboard except to make sure my “out of office” message was on for my work email. I would slink past what I now refer to as the “reading and writing room” (formerly daughter’s bedroom) on my way to the bathroom and look wistfully through the doorway. I wanted to feel like writing. I wanted to even feel like reading. But I didn’t. I couldn’t summon the energy.
I returned to work yesterday. It was exhausting. People were kind. Some gave me a wide berth, since I’m still coughing a lot and my voice sounds like I’m practicing my husky voice, but without the sultry quality. I lasted almost the whole day, then went home and my hubby made me a lovely cheese on toast (exactly what I wanted) and a cup of tea. We watched some TV and relaxed. And then, I could feel it. I could hear it. The room was calling to me. My newly begun, 28-day habit was calling to me. I wanted to get back to the keyboard.
So here I sit, warm mug of tea at hand, scented candle aglow, and ready to get back to this project. Thanks to a tip from from Cathy B, I’ve registered for a NaNoWriMo writer’s workshop (did you catch that, “writer’s” workshop?!) at our local independent bookseller, Mysterscape. This lovely shop opened a couple of years ago in our downtown area, walking distance from home. Yet I’d have missed the NaNoWriMo workshop if not for the eagle eye of fellow bibliophile, Cathy. Thanks for having my back while I was flat out on mine.
I’m really excited about the workshop. It’s described as a “fast-paced, hands-on workshop” to prepare us for NaNoWriMo, run by an author who is also a retired professor of writing. The session is limited to 15 people, and we’re told to bring 3 x 5 inch note cards and something to take notes with. Index cards. I love index cards. All of this makes me tingle with excitement at the prospect of learning about the craft. The craft. Ha! I haven’t a clue what I’m talking about but I’m sure having fun giving it a go.
Speaking of not having a clue what I’m talking about, my brother gave me a real gift. As I mentioned in my post on September 25th, my kind, talented, brother Matt with a PhD (aka Dr. Matcuk) offered to give me feedback on “Where There’s a Will” and I said, “Yes, please.” A few days later he sent me back a document that came with a table, headings such as “Notes on Plot”, “Comments on Structure”, and “Need for Mounting Conflict.” There were charts and diagrams and “Notes on Style”. Unfortunately I received this just as my illness had me running on about 5% energy. But I’ve set myself a task. Over the next couple of nights I’ll be pouring over these comments and suggestions. I’ll probably want to rip what I’ve written from my blog and send apologies to you all for the drivel you’ve endured. Or maybe not. Maybe, true to his word, Matt saw something in what I wrote, and by considering his suggestions, I can learn something for the next time.
Thanks for sticking with me folks. My tea cup is nearly empty so until next time…