like wrestling a tar-baby

Because I can sense that darn black dog nosing her way back ever closer lately, I went and bought some St John's Wort tablets this morning. I've heard they help. We'll see. I also bought some ginseng tablets, because I know energy levels help.

Also, in an attempt to actually achieve some things today, I haven't started on the novel yet.1 Instead, I've started on little projects which I can complete in a day and cross off the list. One of these was a job application2. Another was that damned week six clarion story which still has no title. (I must admit I haven't exactly been trying hard to find a new title. First things first.)

The job application took a little over an hour. The short story…? Well, I've been working on it since midday, and I've only just hit the halfway point. I swear, I have broken this beyond all repair.

Maura recently summarised the whole revision process very accurately (for me, anyway):

Revising a story is always an interesting process. Usually it begins with great hopes, stalls in despair, and resolves through grim-faced determination.

Me, I'm stuck in the grim-faced determination phase. I'm currently stitching this poor, gutted story back together, convinced that even Frankenstein will look more attractive and animated.

Now, I've revised enough short stories that I know not to trust myself on this. Still. Right this very second? Hate this story.

But the cat is trying to sit on my shoulders, which means he figures it to be dinner time, and I figure I won't get anything more done till he's eaten.

  1. This will quite possibly make me feel frantic and behind the curve later on tonight; but I'm hoping that I'll be rational enough to ignore that. And that finishing a few things will counterbalance it. []
  2. There's a lab position available where I work, which would certainly pay better than my admin position and yet is still part-time; so I figure why not apply? []

4 thoughts on “like wrestling a tar-baby

  1. One thing I've found that helps with that big black dog is lots of exercise. Something good and aerobic, get the heart pumping. The thing I've noticed, since I've been running regularly, is that the mood swings are less, and thus the black moments are only a sorta greyish bleh as opposed to black. It's all about the endorphins, and the burning of cortisol (I think it's cortisol, the stress one? That builds up in muscles and such and can suck big time if allowed to do so?)

    Helps with the energy levels, too, after a while, if you can get yourself to stick to it in the beginning.

  2. Yes, I've found that, too, actually. (Although it never helped with the energy levels. But I might be an entirely new breed of human – a somnambulant – because I'm always dozy.)

    Which is why last weekend I splurged on a treadmill. It will be delivered sometime next week. My plan at the moment is to get the laptop set up on top of it, and amble while I write, so I can at least get some more movement in my day without sacrificing writing time. But I want to do some good jogging on it, too.

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