Saturday, April 10, 2010
It Came From The Fictional Side
I have recently been attacked by novel, (they lurk in dark places and jump out on me when I least expect them. While walking. Ironing. Innocently doing dishes, once or twice in the type of situation where they SHOULDN'T) and I’m feeling the consequences. Things I had planned to do, that I had lots of time to do, now highjack me out of the blue.
Take today for instance – please! – I sat down to work on the novel and realized I had to take the cat to the vet and had a short window if I wanted my son Robert to go with me. Not that Robert is much help, mind. The poor thing has inherited my sense of direction. Which means every time we go somewhere together it’s an adventure. Indiana Jones type adventure. Only instead of dodging Nazis and reading Latin or Greek (that would be easy!) we’re dodging weird drivers (WHY do they love the blind spot, anyway?) and trying to figure out why the GPS wants us to do a U turn in the MIDDLE of the highway.
This, however, is easier than when I go alone. Because when I go alone the combination of no sense of direction and TOTAL lack of visual memory hits. I end up on a side street having a panic attack because not only do I have no idea how to get wherever I was going, but I know I’ll never ever ever get back home.
So I had a limited amount of time to go out. Meanwhile, my younger son having called to ask for money for a field trip next Saturday (to see Othello, in Denver) I had to stop by the ATM – which was fine. For emergencies, I – of course – put the phone in my purse, after charging it.
So far so good, right? Except that I got to the ATM and couldn’t remember my – newish – code. So I reached in purse for my phone, because my husband might know it. And the phone wasn’t there. Right...
Get to vet. Drop off cat, ask to use phone. And realize I don’t know husband’s (newish) phone number at work. No problem. I’ll call his cell phone. Only the only cell number I can remember is my younger son’s who isn’t answering because he is in class. Finally Robert remembers cell phone number. I call. A puzzled husband gives me code.
Get money from ATM. Come home with son who by then needed to go to college. Come to my office to put money in envelope for younger son. Have message from CoffeeTimeRomance and More asking if I was doing the blog after all. Look at date. Yipes. How did it get to be the ninth? Oh, yeah. Was writing.
Phone, BTW, still plugged in, on desk.
Get blog in, tell lady I’ll be gone for an hour. Run to school. While there remember was supposed to get a form this week. Well, it’s still this week, right? Try to remember name of form. Inexplicably gone from head. End up playing charades with TWO counselors before they figure it out. I can tell they think I’m a lunatic. I can’t say “sorry, it’s this novel. I remember all their names and what they had for breakfast ten years ago. I just don’t remember my own middle name.”
Get form. Come home. Organize husband picking up cat from vet. Try to work. Realize about to miss date for return of interview questions to another site. Return interview questions. Try to work. Oh no, time to make dinner...
The above would not be nearly so frantic if the novel didn’t fill up my mind and push out anything unrelated to it, including deadlines, routines, food, and bathroom breaks. Because it behaves this way, though, writing a novel is a succession of crisis I try to ignore long enough to write.
How is it for you? And how do you cope with it? And does anyone have any idea where I left my brains?