In Which Our Heroine Breathes A Little Easier

7 November 2003

I hate giving up. I have to recognize that sometimes it's the reasonable course of action, but I still don't like it. When, for example, you have no acknowledgement that your story arrived eight months ago when you sent it out, and your query e-mail bounced, and they really wouldn't pay you that much for it anyway, it is then time to give up and send the story somewhere else.

I know that. I just don't like it. At all at all.

The e-rejection drought ended this morning with a single e-jection on a reprint submission. Postally, nothing. I still suspect hoarding and nefarious purposes. I really do.

I feel somewhat better this morning, although I'm afraid I can blame most of that on the lack of NyQuil. Next time I will only take one of the two gel-caps. Some of you suggested that it was the alcohol in the NyQuil that was making me dizzy. Somehow, I'm skeptical that I was tipsy-dizzy but not otherwise tipsy twelve hours (including a nine hour sleep) after taking the stuff. Even I am not that much of a lightweight. I think it was something else, or an interaction of some sort. Anyway, can't we be done with this sick thing? I'm tired of it. I'm ready for something else. I could do the insanely busy thing. That would work. I could do the prancing around playing in my home sweet home thing. That would work, too. I could even attempt the lady of leisure thing, for an afternoon or so. Better than the sick thing. Really.

I have to keep reminding myself, too, that I'm doing a bunch of contract work. I keep being dissatisfied with my fiction work, and then I have to pull myself up short and say, "You just moved, you're sick, and you're doing a ton of contract work." And then it's okay for awhile, until I have to tell myself again. I think it's just that I want to do too much. Not, as I keep thinking, that I need to do too much. I can take the time to do things I need to do right. Really really really.

Reading for my articles yesterday included Zilpha Keatley Snyder's The Famous Stanley Kidnapping Case and The Witches of Worm (neither of which was as good as The Headless Cupid), Marguerite Henry's Sea Star, Orphan of Chincoteague, and Bruce Coville's Space Station ICE-3 and Oddly Enough. I really liked Space Station ICE-3; I thought it was well-done, and the characters named after Coville's skiffy buddies amused me. David asked yesterday whether I'm going to be burned out on children's books when I'm done with all these. I don't think so. They've varied a lot, for one thing; for another, in some ways it's energized me about children's books and children's authors to seriously wander through the stacks and pick up some stuff I hadn't thought about in awhile. I know I'll be looking for more Snyder and Coville; I know I'll want to reread the last three books in the Betsy-Tacy series; I know I'll keep picking up Patricia Wrede's books as I can find them. It'll be good to have a bit more variety in my reading, but mostly the relief will be having more time for fiction again for awhile. (And having money from the articles, of course. There's always that.)

C.J. and I watched "Return of the Jedi" last night, theme of the week seeming to be "movies that don't demand a lot of us." It's good to have a few things that are reliable that way.

I think I'm feeling better now apart from the NyQuil, actually. I woke up a little more phlegmish and coughy and sneezy, and I wouldn't say I'm at 100% now. But driving out to Hastings seems reasonable at this point, and my voice is clearer if still raspy. Going up and down the stairs doesn't feel like a great burden. Yes. This is definitely better. Now the question is where the balance point is, where I can get things done and not be overdoing. (I know, I know; that's always the question. But it's a different balance point than my usual.) I think what I'm going to do is to get ready for errands with a contingency plan. I will drive out to Hastings first. Then if I'm feeling peaky, I'll come home and work more on articles here. If not, I'll pick up ink. If I'm not worn out after that, a snow shovel. Then the bank. Then the library. And so on until it's time for dinner, I've run out of errands, or I'm ready to rest. Contingency plans are our friends. Another friend: not getting sick again.

(See, Karina? I'm doing my best for the Psychic Illness Link: trying not to keep us sick for long. I still think we should change it to a Psychic Chocolate Link or a Psychic Story Sale Link or something like that. But in the meantime, we'll do what we can.)

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