Life throws curves.

It really isn't all that easy being a writer. For me, this requires being left alone for lengths of time to get words on the page. I can usually futz about characters and plot during my commute. I've written before about commuting with Lorelei, the Muse. This is beneficial, because there are no other distractions, like WordPress, email, Twitter. I have a routine these days. I get up early on my days off, and write about all the things that came together during my commute hours. It isn't perfect, but it works.

My life changed radically over the weekend. Our 27 year old son moved back in last night. This isn't completely unexpected. He's been living unhappily with a girl for years now, and threatens to move back home regularly. He hasn't worked in years, and I do mean years. He claims back problems, but that's pretty hard to prove medically.

I don't know that I care one way or the other about proof. The fact is that he is here now, and I have my suspicions it will be a permanent change.

My wife and daughter had a major blowout last night. I only got to hear half of it, because it was over the phone. It's one every parent has on occasion. The child is a pig, and expects the parents to clean up after her. It's usually covered up with, “I'll do it later,” or some other fiction. It's not a life changing problem, but it is tension I prefer not to have.

As a result, my daughter stayed with a friend last night. She came home and slammed a door about 6:00 AM. This was my alarm clock for the day. She left for work at 8:00 or so.

Today is a national holiday in the US. I am supposed to be alone to work on my projects. But I'm not alone, and may never be alone again. To an introvert like me, this is poison.

There are some loopholes. My daughter did go to work. My son will spend 90% of his time in his bedroom. There will probably be some loud television, or music to contend with. Perhaps I can relocate to my own bedroom, or the back porch when the weather improves. I could even go to the storage lot and write in the camper.

I shouldn't have to, but that's reality.

My wife and I were pretty happy about being empty nesters. It looks like our happiness was short lived. We'll have to try finding happiness in some other way. We've always done date night, but it will be more important now.

I tried my best to work through all of this. I was even moderately successful. The Yak Guy Project has another 2200 words, and I got to a huge plot point in his adventure. I'd rather have added 10,000 words, but I'll take what I can get.

I also managed to add 1200 words to side project. This one is a science fiction short story. I have no planned word count for it. It will finish wherever it finishes.

I've come to the realization that finishing motivates me. Short form fiction satisfies me almost like a cookie as a child's reward. When I read a novella, I feel good to have finished something. When I write a micro-fiction, it feels good to finish. I read several books of short stories last year, and every story was like a little reward.

Speaking of treats, I dealt with the other story that really needed italics. I rewarded myself by washing out my Stipula Gladiator fountain pen. (Hail Cobby) It has an italics nib, and I filled it with a nice blue black ink. I've been using it to make notes on paper about characters, possible names, word counts, and more. I didn't need to, but it makes me happy.

Finishing could be why having a short side project is working for me. With the turmoil under my roof, the scales may tip toward more short form stuff. It isn't what I want, but it is a possibility. Right now, I'm not giving up on my 2016 business plan. I still hope to have The Playground out near the end of winter. I would like to get Yak Guy out before snow flies next year.

I managed part of an editing pass on The Playground last night. This was before everything landed. This story involves three alternating stories that weave together to tell a bigger one. One of the editing projects involves reading each story by itself to see if the continuity works. I've finished two, and am part way through the last one. This is the character that carries the burden of the speculative element to the story.

Once I get cover art, I'll ask for beta readers. I have an artist, but we haven't even tried to discuss it yet. I have him working on a Lisa project right now.

So, I accomplished a few things. I might have accomplished more, but that's not certain. I don't like my current situation, but I'm kind of stuck with it. It's still early today, and I might get more of that editing pass finished.

I have a busy week ahead of me at the paycheck job, and maybe that's just what I need right now. Fighting metaphorical fires requires me to turn off the part of my brain that dwells on crap. My imagination is usually worse than the reality, and maybe by next weekend the situation won't look so nasty.

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47 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized, Writing

47 responses to “Life throws curves.

  1. The like is more for hope that you can claim several author victories this year. Sorry to hear about the situation at home. Hopefully it’s more short term than it seems as far as interfering with your writing. Winter is always bad for creative pursuits when you have other people in the house. Too cold to work in the unheated parts of the house, so everyone congregates around the warm spots. Again, I really hope things settle for you sooner rather than later.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. It’s not easy being a writer. Its not easy being a parent, so the two together, well, let’s just say life is going to be an adventure. I must admit that at 27 I expect both my sons to be living useful happy independent lives. I love them intensely, but I don’t want them still at home at that age. I can understand your disappointment. Maybe it will give him a chance to make some decisions about his life. All you can do is keep on carrying on. Sounds like you’re doing just great.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh the joys of being a parent! I’m at the other end of this journey and believe me,I feel your pain as my daughter is currently doing wall of death around the living room and sticking her fingers in electrical sockets just to bait me and then wailing when I tell her off. Good luck and keep cracking those rocks, there’s gotta be a diamond in there somewhere ๐Ÿ™‚

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  4. Oh wow! I love my kids but I really hope that when they are gone it’s for good. I’m sorry for you! Hope you can hold on to your inspiration and your sanity.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Those sound like some pretty big changes, Craig! In addition to space I think introverts also need quiet. At least I do. The back porch is always a great place to work in warm weather. Hopefully, the kids will settle into their own routine and life will eventually return to a semblance of normalcy.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Sorry to hear about the domestic changes. Even when family is hiding away in their bedrooms, we still hear their presence, and knowing they’re there can distract our writing. It throws off our routine, and for many of us who write, routine is important. Hope it smooths out for you.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Even though your environment has been upended, it sounds like you had a productive day. I totally understand the noise factor. With snow falling my husband has been inside 24/7, chatting away while I’m trying to concentrate. Finally I played this: https://youtu.be/NIqq9GusbSQ Maybe it’ll work for you too.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Sorry to hear about all this commotion. The camper idea sounds like a good one. Is there an electrical hook up in storage?

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Ugh. You know how I feel about my quiet room. (We are fortunate and the front and back of the house cannot be heard one from the other.)
    Twice we’ve lived with my husband’s parents for several months each time, to save on expenses while we found a home. And both times, with 2-3 kids. I think my MIL enjoyed it immensely, and we’re very tidy, but I think my FIL enjoys his quiet much more than us, and I don’t blame him.
    Now our son lives there and when we were last there, they dared complain of his messiness to us, which has us in stitches. Messiest kid ever. Even at 22 he’s messier than Moo, and Moo is messy. I think the point is rather that one has to enjoy tidiness to maintain it; it’s not a failure to parent properly. Some people don’t mind chaos. Those people should not live here, but they do/have! He may well still be their favorite, but they see him differently now ๐Ÿ˜‰ lol
    The camper is not a bad idea, Craig. I’d go for that. Especially were it parked to a view! ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Joey’s right, it isn’t about bad parenting so don’t do that to yourself. Out of six kids between JD and I we’ve had three of them come home at various points in their adulthood. We finally outsmarted them though when we moved into a senior mobile home community. No one can live here who isn’t 55 or older. Or that’s what we told them anyway! I hope things settle for you and 2016 evolves to a better year than it’s started out to be.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Hope your situation improves!! I know I’ve had setbacks on planned projects as well having developed carpal tunnel syndrome. But like you said, we have to take the curves and move on.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. We have been empty nesters for eight years, but my daughter and husband will be moving in with us for a month or so when they move back to this area in two months, We hope it IS only a month – we love them dearly but have come to enjoy our solitude. I especially need it for writing!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I hear ya! My daughter, with three kids five and under, broke her foot the other day. I’m trying to help where I can, but a house full of kids and a crippled mama…well, not much got done. Here’s hoping things ease up on you sooner rather than later.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. You deserve your pen treat after enduring a difficult home week. I’m really sorry the situation has gotten kind of out of hand and that there are such tensions. I hope you can all come to some resolution that you can live with.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Yeah, that’s where I’m at with my 19-year-old son. If I discover a magical remedy, I’ll let you know.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I can feel your pain on this one. I, too, need some peace and quiet in a large chunk of time to do my usual routine of work, which can be complicated when you share a small place with three early 30s guys (so no kids as you have, but it’s practically the same thing). Thankfully, their work schedules and natural inclination to be night owls allows me to take advantage of my early bird nature. I get up early and have a good solid five hours before they start to come back to life.

    Where there’s a will, there’s a way. There will definitely be an adjustment period, but, if it’s anything like my experiences, the writing will come when it wants to come and you’ll be golden. Best of luck, man.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Checking in with all my favorite bloggers this rare free, not-snowy-yet day! Oh dear. So many friends of mine are in this situation now…good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

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