This day was much more productive than the one before.
The first thing on my list was PT. I guess I'll know before I go to Europe as to whether or not I'm going to surgery man or not. I really would rather not. That's better motivation than anything to do the squats that my PT lady was making me do. I did them.
I then worked out for a good twenty minutes and exhausted myself by going way too fast with way too little water.
Then it was time to meet Kate for our writing session, which was at the swankiest coffee shop I've ever seen. And it was across from my apartment, who knew? I guess Scooters has the money?
We had a productive session. We wrote from about 12:45 to 5:00, so that's awesome. I got to the next "issue" of my book (section). I'm at the point where I know it's not magical poetic prose I'm dribbling onto the page, but I'm working out the characters' movements and actions and I feel like I have to keep going forward. I guess I'll put the garnish on later.
I'm trying to learn how I work. I did know, back when I was in undergrad and majoring in playwriting and English. I was writing 24/7, focusing on my rhythms and patterns and having a million people finger my manuscripts on a daily basis. Now it's me, Kate, sometimes Alex, and my mentor. Now it's me after five years of having a job unrelated to writing, trying to revisit how I do this thing. I keep trying to think back to when I was nineteen and trying to get through the other book. How did I do it? Did I just charge ahead? It was easier to write that other one.
Alex says I'm doing fine. I say that everything that is coming out of this keyboard is sludge.
Another problem that is arising is pacing. When my character died, I went into that sort of shock. I think it just reminded me of my friend a little too much. And so that meant the storytelling went into shock, and we have like thirty pages of shock. I'm aware all of these problems will be fixed, but I don't feel confident going into the next section.
I put away my work and went on a date with Alex. We'd been planning this date for a good week. We had a coupon to the restaurant where we first met. It's also where he first came up with the idea that we should get married. It's also where our parents met for the first time.
It wasn't as fun as it should have been.
We were both stressed, him about the day and me about everything. We just went through our laundry list of grown-up stuff we need to get under control. Will we have a car payment? How are we going to pay for a rental to get out to the wedding? Which account is PT going to come out of? What do we even want out of life? When I go back to work, what the hell am I going to do? What if I have to go into surgery? How long do you think recovery will be? How much is it going to hurt?
We tried to stop, but it kept spiraling, and I didn't enjoy my chicken parm sandwich much.
Then we walked around downtown, trying to get excited about Europe. We'll be so overwhelmed, our minds will be blown, think about all the cool stuff we'll see ... we have so much to do before we go ... will we starve with their itty bitty European portions ... will I be able to walk the Champs Elysee with my bum leg ... will we get lost ... will we even like it ... we didn't budget enough money for it ...
I just went home and went to sleep.
I wonder if this is how being a grown-up is. Mom and Dad used to make the trip itineraries, pay the bills, worry about how we'd get to where we're going. Now it's us. And now that one of us is working at a job and one of us is working on school and a more artsy endeavor, how do we come together after work? We have three hours at the end of the day. I don't want to sleep and stress through them.
But the good news is that I was much more productive and I think made it clear to everyone how I am not on call for their own needs while I'm trying to get work done. I've felt awful about that, since I think I snapped a little more than I needed to in order to get my space, but I can't just go hang out with people and do favors all the time. Maybe I'll start a request book ...
Thursday. I hope to continue to write, actually get some reading done for Europe, and get all my PT out of the way. I hope I can go to my parents' house tonight to look at pictures for the wedding slideshow.
What is this?
Dawson is an editor and writer and MFA student at Stonecoast. She writes stuff.