Wednesday, August 25, 2010

On The First Day of School

My first day of teaching is over. Yeah!
I have to say that as far as first days of school go, it was pretty good. It went so fast that I didn't have time to feel hungry or lament my lack of coffee.
This year my first day of teaching coincided with Son's first day of school. I had time to snap the obligatory First Day photo, but little else. Middlebrow was charged with dropping him off and picking him up after. Pretty anti-climactic. There have been no reports, yet, but Son is busy establishing some kind of elaborate Lego culture, complete with Lego economy, in his room with his Friend. I expect that I'll get some kind of off-handed but revelatory comments later, like, "Oh, yeah, but then after Whatshisname puked, Alex told us we were going to compose a rock opera using Garage Band." And this will involve some supply that I'm supposed to bring, or some email I'm supposed to have sent or received, and maybe some costumes that I'm supposed to construct using t-shirts and duct tape. I look forward to it.
So far, the year is off to a good start. Son's class rocks, and is possibly the best ever. Ever! I'm hoping that the insane stacking of my classes in the morning (1-2-3!) will eliminate the time I spend fretting and over planning.
I'm looking forward to teaching the Novel Writing class tomorrow night.

Saturday, August 07, 2010

Look! I'm blogging!

Now that I have decided that my goal is imperfection, I'm back on the 500 words a day plan. It also involves ice cream bars, neighborhood walks, driving around, expensive cheese, and not really cooking dinner.
So far, I feel pretty successful, the goal being imperfection. Also, my glutes hurt. Yes, that's a fancy word for butt.

Friday, August 06, 2010

Middlebrow's Anti-Anxiety Campaign

For many years, (how many? unknown) Middlebrow has been trying to get me to just fucking relax about the whole writer/writing thing.
This campaign was revived this morning when, packing up a box of manuscripts that I had, somehow, misguidedly, agreed to judge, I told him, "I'm going to think of myself as someone who likes to writer, rather than as a writer."
I believe he sighed heavily before saying, "You have a book out for fuck's sake." (I may have invented his use of the F word). "In any case, you should just relax and write when you want to write. Don't stress out about it."
This also brings to mind a conversation about a friend who became an EMT. We agreed that he would be a good caretaker in the time of emergency because he seems so even keeled and calm. Like Middlebrow. Though we agreed that neither of us could be EMTs because we couldn't do the simplest tasks, like insert an IV.
It seems to me I know people who are stress cases (me) and people who are chill (MB, our friend the EMT). We also have another friend, a writer whose writing we admire, and we recently talked about her ability to write, have children, be productive, make dinner, basically rule the world (Yes, Nik, it's you). I'm not sure how she does it, but it seems to involve not stressing out about any one thing.
So I need some of this non-stress mojo. Or does one have to care more than I do? Yes, I want to finish this novel, but I also want to hang out, go to the pool, see movies, and surf the internets.
But then I think about the novel, I think about writing the novel, or another book or whatever and my heart starts to palpitate.
What's a girl who likes writing to do?

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Sorry, and Shame and Anxiety

Holy Hell! I haven't blogged in months. Thanks, Nik & Hightouch, for bringing me to my senses.
Like others, I am caught up in the dread of the academic year. I have so much to do, that instead I look at Facebook for hours, not really "doing" anything, but more like, looking, staring off into space, thinking, remembering way back in May when I anticipated this moment when it came to me that the summer was, really and truly, almost over.
So I've been working on those fucking syllabi, and drinking wine, and trying to eat sensibly, and meanwhile driving around hell and back to get new plates for the new car (yes, we bought a new car) and then a new parking sticker and then to Costco for vegetables and meat (so much meat!) and then home to make salmon for dinner and to play Apples to Apples with son and then drink wine while I did five weeks of my syllabus only to discover that the semester which has not yet begun is not moving fast enough.
Is it Fall Break yet?