It seems the old “it bleeds, it leads” adage is alive and thriving on the glut of death and disaster in our world. Last week it was enough to make me retreat, focus heavily on the safe space hubs and I have built together. And not blog. Even though Tom Petty’s death in particular hit me where I live. Not quite to the extent this author described, but the soundtrack of his songs is an underlying beat to my high school and college years. And back in the day when hubs was a rock critic for the Milwaukee daily paper, he got to spend a day with Petty, interview him, get to know him as a person in a way that affirmed the good-guy persona the rest of us caught glimpses of through his lyrics.
Apparently my inclination was not unusual, either. One of my favorite authors, Ilona Andrews, posted about the Fear Overload we’re facing at about the same time I took my break.
Unfortunately, my break was also driven by a cold/flu bug that had me sleeping through the first half of the week. The work requirements that are always heavy, though, didn’t slow down while I did, so the title theme of running down our dreams feels in many ways to me more like sprinting to catch up with the status quo.
Another piece of same old-same old was in play in late September, when the New York Times Book Review deigned to report on romances. What wasn’t expected was the Jezebel response, “How Not to Critique Romance Novels.” There was also the interesting push-back in Harper’s Bazaar entreating everyone to stop calling women nags, and several days later, the response reporting that emotional labor appears to have finally made it into the mainstream of understanding.
On the other hand, horrifying reporting out of Nevada, where a high density of retirees allows for rich predation by those claiming the mantle of “court-appointed guardian,” offered another possibility of a fear overdose.
My natural escape valve for all of this is speculative fiction. I’m thrilled that Star Trek: Discovery is underway. Despite my generalized annoyance with CBS pushing its app on us and therefore forcing us to pay an additional subscription fee in order to be able to watch the show… it’s actually worth it. The production values and story lines make the experience like watching an hour-long movie. The acting and characterization are fabulous. As a bonus, I get to see old episodes of Star Trek: Next Generation on demand.
None of this helps me with my goals, though, which remain:
- Finish edits on Dust to Blood and re-release it with its new cover.
- Edit Blood to Fire and re-release it with its new cover.
- Edit Fire to Dragon and release it.
- Walk at least a mile a day.
- Blog weekly with my ROW80 updates.
- Keep the sanctity of my weekly date night with hubs.
This Round, I’m also looking forward to having the first audio book version of one of my stories. I finally chose and signed an agreement with a narrator to at least take that task off my plate. We’ll see how the experience plays out.
Otherwise, there remain 72 days in this Round, and more things to do than I’ve managed in any given Round to date. So I’ll keep reporting and encouraging you to see how everyone else is doing.