Racing to the Random Deadline, Or, Slowpoke Poetry

Today was good! I managed to turn in the freelance reading group guide I was a business-day behind on (if I'm not careful, they're not gonna use me anymore), AND finish my latest myth poem, AND get the oil changed in my car before our trip to Virginia tomorrow. I felt so productive I'm taking a little time-out, although this could be a bad move because there's a pile of clean laundry downstairs that's about 4 feet deep and needs to be folded. How DOES one household generate so much laundry?

Oh, AND, I'm writing in my blog while the boy takes a late-in-the-day nap and the girl does . . . wait, what is that child doing? Why is it so quiet in here? *Pause for investigation* She's playing Angry Birds while her brother naps. Phew. So anyway, where was I? Writing about writing in my blog. Oh yeah -- THERE'S another accomplishment.

(To tell you the truth, I'm feeling a little guilty about letting her play video games, and then admitting it online, but she and her brother just drove me crazy while waiting in Jiffy Lube. We need some quiet separation time. I'd turn my back for a minute to talk to the sales associate/mechanic and one of them would be scaling the candy machines while the other was trying out each consecutive chair in the waiting room. Plus, we're about to spend 15 6 hours in the car together tomorrow -- I'm sure we'll get more than enough family interaction then.)

ANYWAY, where was I? I'm hyper-excited about the manuscript again. (The mania comes in spurts.) I feel really energized when I look through it -- I've compiled all poems into one document, just to get a feeling for what the final draft will look like. On Friday I had another thoroughly enjoyable lunchtime poetry date with A.P., who insulted my looks profusely but said lovely things about my poems and the manuscript as a whole. He warned me, too, about racing to some arbitrarily-set deadline. Like, you know, the end of November.

He's right, of course. One isn't supposed to generate a whole book of poems like one can generate a reading guide of 1500 words about a book of women's popular fiction. Just because I feel like I should be finished with the book doesn't mean I will be finished. I get nervous, though, about using every inch of this sabbatical. I mean, if I'm lucky, I'll get another sabbatical in 7 years. SEVEN FREAKIN' YEARS! This kind of time to think and process and write is so invaluable, and so precious.

I feel January coming closer like a threat. It's like in the "Never-ending Stoooooo--ooor-eeee" when the Nothingness was encroaching on Fantasia. (Did I just date myself? Um . . . yup!) I want to use every single second to be as productive as possible, and to write a lot because I'll not have time like this again for a very, very long while . . .

Still, I should probably become comfortable with the thought that while I'll most likely finish the manuscript by the end of the sabbatical, it's anybody's guess as to whether or not I'll make headway with the play. Ideally, I'd finish the MS and write the first draft of the entire play in a flurry of productivity, but I know how much time I'm spending on singular line of poetry these days -- and I don't see myself changing speed anytime soon.


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