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Pickle Me This

August 16, 2018


It’s been a wonderful summer, but now it’s mid-August, and I’m starting to lose the plot. And maybe I mean that even a bit literally—I’m 47,000 words into the first draft of a novel and I’ve just kind of reached the climax and don’t actually know what’s going to happen next, which is a terrifying point to be at. It’s like staring over the edge of a cliff, and thinking, But what if this thing doesn’t fly? Which is kind of the way I feel in general, 3/4 of the way through a summer that has been sunshine and swimming and holidays, so many good things, which is nothing to ever take for granted. We make these plans, and then sometimes fate intervenes—but this summer so many of our good days have rolled out like carpets. It’s been fabulous, but I’m also find the lack of structure a little overwhelming. And yes, I’ve succeeded at writing 47,000 words of a new novel and also the 49th Shelf Fall Preview (which IS NO SMALL TASK) but everything else has fallen by the wayside. I’m been meaning to write thank you notes, and letters, and clean my house, and organize the giant pile of stuff on the kitchen table, and read library books with my children, and do little things to get ahead once the craziness begins come September, and it all just seems out of reach, and not because I don’t have time for it all, but because I’m feeling sluggish. It’s hot outside and I’m always sweating, and I could be on the ball to just go go go, but I’m not. I am also spending disproportionate amounts of time being befuddled by the stupidity of people on Twitter and also the abject cruelty of conservative politicians, and it’s so disheartening, and takes up energy too. And today I thought, “What if I’m never productive again?” I pride myself on being a person who gets things done, but when I’ve got less to do, it all falls apart. So I’m looking forward to getting back on track in the next few weeks—either that, or having my entire being atrophy.

One thought on “August”

  1. You’re not alone! Not enough hours in the day, right? On vacation for 2 weeks, I’m trying desperately to finish my book project. I get up earlier and earlier each morning, but the hours just fly by. Before I know it, it’s 3 or 4 pm and I feel like I haven’t accomplished much. Plus there are a hundred OTHER things I want to do around Paris: sightseeing, taking photos, going to my favorite park and to the new Yves Saint Laurent museum, etc. etc.

    But you know what the number one distraction is, Kerry? The Internet. I’m turning it off right now. Bye-bye, and good luck with your projects. P.S. I loathe Twitter (a complete waste of my precious time.)

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