Thursday, March 23, 2006

Avoidance Tactics

I realized the key to writing on this blog is... well, nothing, just log on. If only I'd read my comments, my mood would've been lifted! And I don't usually lack things to ramble about. (Thanks for the comments on the last post!)

I've been avoiding this blog for weeks though. I went to sleep on my birthday on such a high. I had a few friends over and we ate:

(Here are the aforementioned cheeses.)

Stilton with Apricots

The Douanier was a huge hit! Absolutely delicious cheese and not as pricey as it tastes! It's somewhere between a great mozzarella (or maybe friulano) and a super mild/soft Oka. We drank wine. I had some chips and almonds and pecans on offer. And some apple and pear slices, and dried figs. And then cake and coffee. Much hilarity ensued. I felt perfectly content and loved and full of love for my friends.

Except the next day I got a wee bombshell of an email from a friend who felt neglected/affronted by my behaviour at the get-together. I won't go into it, but suffice it to say that this quickly brought my mood down. And I sort-of hibernated for a while. Long term friendships are funny things. People change, and I've never been one to "break up" with friends. It's still a muddle.

Then there was also the statement at the top of this blog - the one that says the novel should be done... oh, next week. That's not going to happen. That creates the temptation to run! run away! too. But I can't do that anymore. Even as I write this, I've been exploring being an ESL teacher, a gemologist, working my way up through a french cosmetics company, working my way up through Starbucks, etc. etc... That is, I've been exploring the "give up and run" options instead of just. Finishing. The. Book. Because, really, all those options will still be there when I finish the first draft too.

I finally looked at it again - all my various pages and have realized I just don't know where to go next. I'm stuck. I know the plot points but something's missing. Not sure if it's a structural problem, or just my own fear.

A writer friend suggested I talk to a well-known local agent (and former publisher) - someone I took workshops with a few years ago. She said he really helped a friend of hers hone in on the problem areas in her manuscript. I would like to talk to him, but I don't know that I want to sign with him if he asked. And I don't know if it's fair to ask an agent's advice and then not sign with him after you take that advice. Maybe I could just pay him for a critiquing session.

Well, last Sunday I actually took my laptop to Starbucks and wrote. Only 500 words. But it alleviated some of my guilt. So, I'm blogging again.

Also, I've been sick of my behaviour and it's pretty easy to recognize the signs with me. As soon as I'm back to watching CSI (which happens to be on approx. 5 times in a row on various stations on Thursday nights), I know I'm in trouble and avoiding my life. CSI and knitting. I managed to knit a too-short scarf in a pattern/texture I can only call "moldy ice cream". I'll try and post a photo.

Lastly, I had to go online to check my sister's blog, 'cause I miss her so, and I haven't written her a word (sorry).

As for the secret to my sister's radiance - she's found something she loves to do, and she's applying herself to her studies and has not once complained to me about how hard her classes are or how dumb the teachers are - nor has she revealed any self-doubt. She also has simply decided what she wants to do and has followed through without asking for anyone's approval.

Now, for all I know, her classes are swell and her teachers are perfect, or maybe she's just saving the complaints for other people, but all I can say is that her approach to her career change has been incredibly positive and admirable. I'm trying to learn from it.

At the local pet food store they sometimes sell puppies (from reputable breeders in Ontario). They currently have both a Saint Bernard puppy - with adorable huge paws - and a sweet sweet all-tan Mini Pinscher puppy with uncropped ears. I loooove him. The Saint Bernard's going back to his breeder if he's not sold by this weekend, 'cause he getting too big for the cage, poor guy. I love big dogs, but I can't even entertain the thought right now. The "minpin", on the other hand, is so perfect for an apartment. I didn't even know their natural colour is all-tan. People have just popularized the "Doberman" markings for some reason. Okay, I'm mewing... I'll go now... but one day... one day...


Bob W. said...


I now know more about two semi-exotic cheeses than I probably deserve to, so through your work on this blog you ARE writing, informing, and being creative.

By the way, we are toying with getting a dog as well, but I don't think we'll commit this year.

I probably will play it safe and stick to plants!

JuliaMazal said...

I'm better at keeping my cat alive than I am my plants. Er, plant. But if you do get a dog, you'll have to puppy-blog! My b/f has limited the future-puppy to 'shorthair', which I can totally work with.

(And also, you are too kind.)