Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and mild

I’m returning to the world of the living, slowly. Monday was bad. I couldn’t sit — it was as though all more core muscles just quit on me. I could stand or lie down, but none of the middle stuff, and every time I coughed, it got worse, and none of the cough remedies did a damned thing. My insurance isn’t finished being sorted — not my fault, the state is still fussing with the paperwork — so it’s not like I have many choices in care, since we live in a country where healthcare is non-existent for any but the rich, and the Republican politicians are determined to keep it that way and keep taking their payoffs. And there’s nothing they could do anyway – they’d put me through a bunch of tests and then say “I dunno” and give me something that wouldn’t work anyway and charge thousands of dollars I don’t have for it. You can’t use antibiotics on a cold, and if my back wasn’t in such bad shape, I’d just be snuffly and miserable for a few days.

We called an acupuncturist, who suggested that I come in early, early on Tuesday morning. I had a bad night Monday, and practically had to be winched in and out of the car, but we made it. Turns out this was the acupuncturist my acupuncturist suggested I track down AND the one a new friend on the Cape had suggested. It just happened to be the first number we called, and we hit pay dirt.

Anyway, I was there before 8 AM on Tuesday. He’s very gentle, very kind, and he works in the same way my acupuncturist back in NY does. He uses the small, Japanese needles like I’m used to, and, while he doesn’t use Moxa, he uses a heat lamp. I did the best impression of a porcupine EVER for about an hour, and then I nearly hopped off the table and did a dance. My back was still a little sore, but I had movement, and, even when I coughed, the cough moved THROUGH the back, instead of seizing in it, and nearly causing me to pass out. Since we speak the same healing language, I could be very specific on how anything felt at any given moment, and he confirmed what every previous person who has ever worked on me told me — one can instantly see the effect as soon as the needle is in. The energy line becomes visible to the naked eye (which happens, according to this guy, in less than 10% of patients) and each point then informs the next one. It allows for much more precise treatment, because the body gives instant feedback. And his pricing is absolutely fair and reasonable.

Stopped at the health food store to get a few more things (I’d stocked up on Sunday and forgotten the slippery elm, gosh darn it), came home, took a nap to let the treatment set, and, when I woke up, I was about 97% mobile.

I caught up on some stuff, spent time with my students, did some admin, read a lovely little garden book, and started planning for yard work. Of course, then we get news that we could get up to a foot of snow on Friday — not my idea of an April Fool’s joke!

Monday night into Tuesday, I had a bizarre set of dreams that linked a couple of set of dreams I thought were entirely separate, but, according to this set of dreams, are actually connected, and connected to the workshop I’m taking. Yeah, it doesn’t make any sense to me, either, although at 3AM, it seemed perfectly logical.

The cough came back overnight with a vengeance, so I’m sore and uncomfortable this morning. I did my stretches, I used the eucalyptus tablets in the shower to do aromatherapy steam, and I’ll use the malachite stone later, too. I used the lapis on Monday on my throat, and I can now speak again and actually be heard, so that’s a good thing, and I used the malachite on the really sore points on my back on Monday to make them release (until the next fit of coughing). Malachite is tricky, because it’s easy to misuse, and there’s a certain level of toxicity to it if it’s misused. I’d only used it on swellings and wounds before, so I was pleasantly surprised when it helped here.

I’ve got a lot to do today — I may have to let the play go, I don’t think I can sit up long enough to do it. I also have to contact my publisher. Yet again, we’re two days before a deadline and I haven’t heard a word from my editor. Even if I heard back today, I can’t turn around a novel in two days, and the contracted deadline is April 1. This is supposed to be for the second round of revisions, and I haven’t even heard boo about the first. When I asked at the earlier deadline, I was scolded.

I have a follow up appointment next week (cancelled the other appointment I’d made at the other place). There’s a PT place down the street with a good reputation — I may go in and see if I can book 3 or 4 sessions so we can come up with a program for core and back strengthening. I’d rather go to a PT place than to a yoga teacher I don’t know, who may not have the anatomical training necessary for something this specific.

I’d love to just lie down and let the world go by, but the back won’t heal itself, so I’ve got to be active, while not trying to do too much too fast.

And I’ve got to the garbage to the dump — we’re full up in the bins and the recycling.


Published in: on March 30, 2011 at 8:04 am  Comments (4)  
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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and cold

“They” keep saying it will warm up and it keeps staying cold.

Mostly an admin day yesterday, sorting out schedules, proposals, etc. Not enough work done on the book, which is frustrating. Kept getting up every hour or so to stretch out my back. The stretching helps, and then, ten minutes later, it’s a mess again and getting stuck — that’s the only way I can describe it. It gets stuck and I can’t bend or straighten properly. And I can’t soak in a tub (which I’d love to do), because, unless I’m in a tub with a railing, I can’t get up to get out. Downloaded some more music to the iPod. Watched the snow not melt.

All of the admin stuff is necessary, and it’s good to batch it and get it out of the way, but it’s a slog.

Plus, ideas keep spinning. A new piece wants attention, and can’t get any, and the Alexis Walthers piece is tugging at me again. I’ve got extensive notes and know where it wants to go, it’s just that I need to get out the deadlined work before the undeadlined work.

Had a good first writing session this morning on the book, in spite of having to stop a few times and do some location research. Most of the locations I’ve been to and just needed to refresh my memory; one, in the Lake District, I had to research a bit more. It’s only a single scene, but if I don’t get the atmosphere right, it will ring false. I’ve been to the Lake District, I just haven’t been to this particular spot in the Lake District. And, since I can’t get there before the book is due at the end of the month, I have to do careful research.

Reading Donna Leon’s THE GIRL OF HIS DREAMS. I always want to eat pasta and drink wine when I read those books, because there’s so much food in them. Yes, that’s a compliment — I love her books.

Working on the post for Gratitude and Growth – it should be up by the end of the day, and I’ll post the link tomorrow.

Back to the page. I’m hoping to ride the momentum of that first writing session and keep going.


Published in: on February 16, 2011 at 10:39 am  Comments (3)  
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Friday, February 4, 2011


Friday, February 4, 2011
Waxing Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Sunny and cold

Diane Parkin has an outstanding article for writers about payment problems faced in the UK for short fiction. A lot of it applies here in the US. The other profession where people are supposed to work for “exposure” is theatre — imagine, you get to work every night and weekends for the joy of performance! Small theatre, that is. Many small theatres work hard to pay their personnel something, but the ONLY reason Broadway is paid is because of the unions. Having served as a union negotiator, the producers sit across from the table with the position we should be grateful they ALLOW us to work and stop expecting so much money — that working on Broadway is a “privilege”. Of course, they completely ignore the fact that if it wasn’t for writers, actors, designers, and crew, they wouldn’t have anything to produce, and therefore nothing that creates THEIR (often well-paid) jobs.

Yesterday was kind of a loss, due to the back problems, so I’m hoping to get back on track today. It flurried off and on all day, I managed to get out and run the errands that needed to be run, including getting to Staples, where the clerk said that the name of my company, Fearless Ink, sounds like “a really cool tattoo parlor”, which I thought was hilarious.

The rest of the day, I was stuck on the couch on either an icepack or a heating pad. I managed to finish a book I’m featuring on Biblio Paradise — sad, haunting, brutal, beautifully written — and do some more Tower of London research, some of which overlapped the time period in which the book I just read was set. I mulled over ideas for the essay that’s due on the 15th, and it’s starting to come together in my head. I just hope I can spin out 2K on it. It seems more like something that’s 800-1200 words. And a really interesting opportunity to get back to serial writing crossed my desk. I have to think about it and do some number crunching. The good thing is that the whole serial has to be finished before they start running it, which means I could be done writing it before the next big contract starts in fall. But can I fit it in now, knock it out, say in April, after this book is out of the way and the play is done, and still stay on track on all the other projects I’m trying to clear off? I have to think about it. I’ve got two ideas for it, actually — a really cool fantasy that the current research inspired, and also opening out a comedic short story into a serial. I’ve also got the sci-fi horror piece I could expand a bit. So there are possibilities; I just have to figure out what makes the most sense, if any of them do, in terms of time and money and creativity.

And that was it. Not acceptable. I have way to much to clear off my desk before the jobs start in CT to lie around not getting anything done. There’s an event at Long Pasture Sanctuary I want to attend tonight, but it all depends on my back. The valerian I took last night helped a little.

I have to go to the grocery store for myself and the pet food store for the cats, but, other than that, everything else today has to be about butt-in-chair and words-on-page. We’re supposed to get another big storm tomorrow, so maybe I can have a full-on writing weekend.