The novel is stalled — strike that, I’m stalled on writing the novel. I’ve been reading, though: I’m working on Michael Pollan’s In Defense of Food, and just finished Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma and Charles Stross’s Glasshouse. The Pollan books got me started thinking about growing vegetables; with the Siren’s patient mentoring, we spent the weekend setting up planters and, after a trip to the garden center, planting tomatoes, eggplants, zucchini, cucumbers, Italian peppers, and peas.
I’ve also been listening to the audio podcasts of the Long Now Foundation‘s Seminars About Long Term Thinking, which are fascinating. I recommend starting with Stewart Brandt on Rethinking Green and Niall Ferguson and Peter Schwarz on Historian vs. Futurist on Human Progress. The lectures cover a wide variety of topics and are great listening on a Sunday morning long run.
I ran the Soldier Field 10 Mile last week in 1:19:19, nearly 7 minutes slower than my PR but not a complete embarrassment.
As for the novel, it’s a source of a fair amount of frustration right now, but there’s so much competing for my mental real estate lately that I’m not surprised that I’ve put it on the back burner. I need to figure out a way to give it the concentrated effort I put in during NaNoWriMo without ignoring the rest of my life (although I just read that again, and realized it’s impossible). I know that there’s never a “good” time to write — there’s always something else competing for my attention — but the last three months have been … challenging. I keep thinking that it’s time to stop cutting myself so much slack but really, I kind of need it.
A garden! That’s exciting. I’m not sure I could *not* have a garden. I love growing things.
I do totally understand the frustration of a novel in dire peril and the lack of time to write. I live that. Right now, I’m managing to get about 1,000 words done at lunch every day and hoping I have the wherewithall to get the first draft of this new project done in one fell swoop this summer. But, never say never. Life has a way of throwing a monkey wrench in the best laid plans.
It’s weird how that happens, when you’re writing you hardly read and when you read you hardly write, as if the two activities occupy the same mental space.
I’ve been focusing on writing short stories of late. It’s actually helped the novel project indirectly by giving me some opportunities to reprocess it based on a relevant book I’m reading and as I write and revise the shorts themselves.
Maybe taking a similar break would help?
am similarly stalled in the revision process and decided to write a short story instead, which has also stalled. And I don’t have the excuse of having a day job right now.