In Which Excuses and Reasons Mingle

31 May 2003

I'm not sure whether today is a test of my willpower and the list or not. Here's the thing: my weeks go from Monday to Sunday, on my weekly to-do list. And I've hit my target word count for this week, with today and tomorrow left to spare.

Ideally, that target word count was to mean that I could stop working when I hit it. It was to provide an external verification that I had worked "enough" in a given week and didn't "have" to work more on this book. Didn't have to keep nudging myself to stop relaxing and get back to work.

Two things are intervening with this. One, it's going so well. And for awhile, it was a real struggle, and I kind of want to just take advantage and run with it, since it's going so well. The other is, I have a bunch of Reprogramming edits yet to do on my week's goal list. So if I don't continue working on the Not The Moose Book this weekend, I won't consider myself free to relax. I'll merely consider myself free to work on another project.

So the question is, is it important that I do things in this order? It is important to get X words of the Not The Moose written and Y percentage of Reprogramming edited? I don't think it is. I think I pulled those numbers out of thin air. I would like to have this section of NTMB completed and this edit of Reprogramming finished before I leave for home in June. (Neither of them has anything to do with anybody but me right now. I just would prefer not to have to think about it then, and I'd also prefer not to have to take that much bulk of manuscript on the planes to finish off just a little bit on them. If I had a lot to do on them, no problem.) I think I can do both. I have a lot to do in other regards, but I really think it's a reasonable set of goals, even throwing in a short-short I'd like to write and a short I'd like to finish.

As for immediate work...I know that I do better with edits if I have something else to do at the same time. So some balance is called for here. Which balance, I'm not entirely sure, but I don't think it has to be exactly what I thought it would.

It is almost impossible for me to tell whether all this is just babbling justification for my desire to work more on the Not The Moose Book. And if it is, whether that's okay.

Here's what I think I'm going to do: I'm going to let myself work on the Not The Moose if I want to, but I'm not going to raise the goals for next week accordingly. So if I manage to pull this section together faster than I intended, good, but if I want to take an acceptable break Monday or Thursday or some other time next week, I can still do that. It seems like a decent way to go, maybe? Maybe.

I finished LeCarré's The Spy Who Came In From the Cold yesterday, and I have to agree with Daniel that it was better than others (for me, specifically The Looking-Glass War). I'm still not converted to LeCarré fandom, but I don't think anyone expected that I would be. I also started reading Sarah Zettel's The Usurper's Throne. Oh, I want to like this series. I really, really wanted to like the previous book, and I still wanted to like this. And it's all right, I guess...but with every book, I sigh a little. After Fool's War, I was a staunch Sarah Zettel fan, committed to reading everything she wrote. And with every book, that becomes more of a habit than a preference.

It's not that this is a bad book. It's just...there. I have hopes for the next one in the series, because this is a prequel that seems poorly conceived so far. The next one won't be a prequel. Whether it's poorly conceived...well. We'll see. I hope not.

It's Cal and Bobbie's anniversary today! Happy anniversary. There's a lot of stuff in the last week of May. Plenty of excuses to celebrate.

And now it's less than two weeks until the folks and the grands get here, less than two weeks until Mark's folks and sibs get here. Only a little over three weeks until I leave for my visit home. Time is sneaky like that, with its little passing routine. I guess I'd better play along, just to keep it happy.

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