Uncorking With Jealousy

I did manage to brush up against copyedits yesterday…but then a cover draft landed for Moon’s Knight and getting that book moved up in the queue took precedence. A final proof pass has been finished, and now the cover is the last piece before I can send it out into the world. It’s a relief–I wrote it last year during the darkest days of lockdown, it utterly possessed me, and just getting it out and away will represent a victory of sorts.

And boy howdy did the cover draft make me happy. My cover artist is amazing, you guys.

I’m still feeling like a hopeless, burned-out hulk, though. Four years of increasing fascism crowned with a coup1 added to a bloody pandemic for the last year and a half is apparently my limit.

I suppose, to be absolutely fair, it’s not the pandemic per se but the ongoing fumbling in response to it. Don’t get me wrong, it’s nice to have adults in charge again, and yet I could wish they weren’t so beholden to corporations whose entire goal is keeping a serf class too sick and scared to organize and resist their metastasizing.

Anyway, I’ve hit the wall bigtime. It was nice to reread the portal fantasy though; the sense of escape, even though I was proofing, was extremely welcome. And of course days when I can run, the stress chemicals are purged and I get a few hours of tenuous harmony before the discomfort mounts again.

Today is for forcing myself through walkies and a run, then back to the copyedits. I’m sure something will land in my inbox that needs attention; the best way to uncork something in the work process is to throw up one’s hands and focus on another task that needs doing. I call it “the jealousy principle”, because if a book is giving me trouble I often shift to the next one in the queue and let the first know it’s basically being ignored.

The Muse, like certain movie psychopaths, will not be ignored, thank you.

I know there’s reason for hope, but my supply is barrel-scrapings at the moment. And years of hoping, only to be kicked in the teeth, have left their mark. Sinking myself in work seems like the best option, as usual and even though it might contribute to the burnout. It’s still vastly preferable to the alternative.

What’s getting you through, my beloved? Drop them in the comments if it pleases you; I could use some nice things to get excited about.

I suppose it’s time to finish my coffee, choke down some toast, and get the dogs strolled around the block. Running before the heat mounts is also a good idea; the last thing I need is to pass out at the fifth kilometer or so. I’ve had enough of being flung to the pavement; the dogs are responsible for roughly eighty percent of all the time I’ve spent picking gravel out of my own flesh.2

Off I go for Tuesday. Maybe it’ll be less ugh than Monday. If not, well, I’ve work to do, and that will keep me occupied, if not quite sane.3

And I’ve got the machete, too.

Over and out.

  1. A coup which is still attempting to sputter on, albeit with legal maneuvering instead of outright street violence at the moment…
  2. The other twenty percent is my own clumsiness, naturally.
  3. Sanity might not be quite overrated but definitely feels almost a case of diminishing returns at the moment.

12 thoughts on “Uncorking With Jealousy”

  1. what’s getting me through right now is that I can work from home, so I can keep myself and my family safe. also that my almost 19-year-old son is navigating adulthood at a level that makes me very proud. and escapism in the form of new books and comforting old ones.

  2. We ordered a new cabinet for lunch supplies (thus giving them their own spot in the kitchen, separate from the General Snacks shelf) and it arrived yesterday. Secondborn — who’s on a No Screens break as we approach the start of school — stepped up and put the thing together, almost by himself. I’m damned proud of him, but even better is seeing him be proud of himself for this.

    The dog, however, remains an unrepentant burger-thief who should be watched at all times. (Update: CrotchStomper McSnuggles reports that that last sentence should say “walked” at all times. Though personally, I wouldn’t trust the word of someone who’d steal a hamburger right off the table like that.)

  3. What’s getting me through is being able to pause and read essays from like-minded folks who see the circus for what it is. A reminder I’m not alone. Appreciate your brilliant but sad observation re: “corporations whose entire goal is keeping a serf class too sick and scared to organize and resist their metastasizing.” Yeah.

    Passing a kidney stone. Rediscovering the joy of chili dogs with a good bun and dog. Enjoying fresh fruit and whole wheat toast, with red pepper hummas and sliced cucumbers.

    Also expanded my Asian film interests last year to include Chinese, Korean and Taiwanese drama & series. Returned to writing fanfic and loving it. Trying to rope a few friends in as well. Trying my hand at working on two at once from different fandoms. Don’t know if they’ll become “jealous” of each other. Small, but complete diversions. I need them.

    • I feel like I’m screaming into the void most days. It’s good to know the words are reaching at least one person who needs them.

      Speaking of Asian film interest, I should probably watch some more Shaw Bros. I love those damn films.

  4. Listening to my favorite music that matches up with the book I’m writing or reading. The music gives me ideas for future scenes. While reading another’s book, an even better picture of the characters. Mind you my music not the artist’s playlist. Then taking my bestie on a walk.

  5. I am wallowing in the Back to School sales. I do not have kids. But lordy do I love office supplies! Just looking at the gleaming stacks of stationary and shiny pens makes my heart happy. It is shallow and silly and I embrace it.

    • My writing partner feels that way about Ikea. The colors and the order are so soothing, even if one doesn’t want to buy anything. Just walking and looking is food for the soul.

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