I know there have been tumbleweeds blowing around here on the old blog the past couple of weeks. I feel guilty about it. Maybe guilty isn’t the right word, since it really isn’t hurting anyone but me if I don’t post. Stressed out is probably a more accurate term. It’s not just the blog, it’s the whole social networking thing. I haven’t tweeted in a month, I’ve hardly commented on anyone’s blog in the past two weeks, and lately I’ve even been absent from Facebook. If you can’t find the time to make one lousy comment on Facebook a day, you know you’re hard up.
I’ve been completely slammed with landscaping and book stuff. I’m making progress with formatting Running Wide Open for print on demand, and the ebook is almost ready to upload. All I’m waiting for is one more blurb and the first chapter of Getting Sideways, the second book in the series. With ebooks it’s common to include a sample of a coming attraction at the end of your book. I thought I had this excerpt all ready to go, but then I found an editor who actually seems to know what she’s doing, and she pointed out some problems. This meant going from being a few days away from being ready to upload, to having to completely re-write the chapter. And since there are other edits I’m going to need to make, I had to invest a lot of time in planning it all out before I could be sure exactly what to put in that chapter. The whole editing-the-second-book thing pretty much derailed my publication schedule and completely changed my focus, so now that I’ve got the chapter finished I’ve got to go back through my notes from ten days ago to figure out what I’m supposed to be doing on Running Wide Open.
What makes all this really difficult is that by the end of the day, I’m beat. Landscaping is hard work, especially in the spring when you’re spreading yard debris compost almost every day. But this year it’s even worse because the compost is soaking wet from all the rain. When it’s wet it’s really heavy, it doesn’t spread well, and it squishes down into a disgusting mat if you step on it. In addition to this, I messed up my shoulder, so it hurts to shovel the mulch, and the sucky thing about working when you’re hurt is that it totally drains your energy. I figure it’s tree karma. My chiropractor-friend Sean said that the ache on the outside of my arm is probably referred pain from a rotator cuff injury. I looked that up online, and sure enough, it matches the symptoms exactly. The thing is, those sort of injuries are usually caused by doing repetitive work above your head. I looked back through my records to what I was doing around the time the pain started and there was only one job, since that was early February—pruning a tree with my chainsaw-on-a-stick. I shouldn’t have even been pruning the tree that way, since I was basically topping it, but the customer kept asking me to do it, expecting his red maple to be a dwarf that had a nice umbrella shape (in other words, wanting the impossible) so I finally gave in. I’m just not into talking back to 84-year-old WWII veterans. But now the universe is getting back at me for butchering that tree. I just know it.
So here’s the deal. I get home from work sore and tired. I’d like to kick back with a Guinness and watch reruns of House all night, but instead I have a book to publish. I can force myself to do a little book stuff at night, but that’s about it. And don’t ask me to write. I can Photoshop, format, and sort through my list of book reviewers for matches, but stringing words together is next to impossible. You’d think making a comment on someone’s blog or Facebook wouldn’t require a whole lot of brainpower, but I just sit there staring at the screen trying to remember how to spell simple words. In fact, this here blog post is about killing me. I hope it makes sense.