Friday, April 05, 2013

Pecking Away

Sorry for not getting anything up yesterday--I'm trying my hardest to put something up on Sundays and at least one day mid-week (usually Thursdays), but for it being a day off, I found myself surprisingly busy. 

But the entire week's been busy for me. Of course on Wednesday, I had another doctor appointment.  Well, I actually needed to just get my FMLA renewal paperwork signed, so I don't get jacked at work for the attendance policy stuff, but you can't see the doctor, or even just have the paperwork dropped off without coughing up that co-pay and getting the full-on exam.  I really shouldn't complain because I really like my doctor and the staff there at the office, they've always treated me really well, and it feels like I'm there EVERY week.  It was just a minor annoyance, because what I thought would take me about ten minutes ended up taking away most of my afternoon. 

And I'd forgotten to bring my phone charger with me that day, which created another pain in the butt for me.  Usually I have a USB adapter in my backpack with me at all times, and I plug my phone into my desktop at work to charge it, or into the USB port in the center console of my car.  But, instead, when I left work the night before, I just put it in my pants pocket and forgot about it.  And while I was sitting in the waiting room, and in the exam room, waiting, I was constantly playing Ruzzle against three or four different people, which sucks the battery faster than using it as a GPS. So the iPhone went into last-gasp mode and shut down on me. 

After my day at the doctor's office, I had to drive across town to Green Hills and secure a table for eight at Cheesecake Factory for a family dinner.  I had plenty of time to kill, plus I still had my laptop in my backpack, so I walked over to Panera Bread to chill for an hour and maybe do some writing.  But then their wifi was on the fritz, so all I did try and edit some Word files I'd been working on, but my heart wasn't into it, so I mostly just sat and played Hearts while drinking my vanilla latte.

I did, however, have a cool random encounter while I was there.  When I walked in, I wandered about for a minute or two, looking for a table with an electrical outlet nearby (the laptop is getting old, and the battery ain't what she used to be).  Well, at the same time there was a rather attractive gal who kept looking at me, and once I grabbed a table, she came over to talk to me. 

Turns out she was meeting a blind date there, and wondered if I were he.  Of course, my best response came to me about thirty seconds after I told her that I was not.  Then I was kicking myself--I could've offered to pretend we were there together until the dude showed up, and then if he seemed OK she could go over and introduce herself, if he didn't, well then, Roll Tide!

But I didn't bring my A-game with me, and instead it was just me and the laptop having coffee.

Eventually we had our dinner a few doors down at the Cheesecake Factory.  I had a few bites of some chicken-stuffed tortilla with black beans and corn fritters (so damn good!), but then got the to-go box.  Of course I also had them get me a slice of German Chocolate cheesecake to go, too.  Certainly not what I was supposed to be eating, but since I spread it out over a couple of days, it's OK, right?

But Thursday, it was nice to actually sleep in and not be bothered by the alarm clock.  For the last couple of weeks, I've been run-down and out of sorts, waking up exhausted every day, no matter how early I'd gone to bed.  So I felt pretty good yesterday.  I did my normal household chores, but then I spent a couple of hours reading, too--I've got a couple of free books from Amazon that I'm supposed to review within 30 days, so I read until I fell asleep and napped for three more hours. 

Too bad I didn't appreciate how awesome naps were back when I was a kid--I'm all over that shiat nowadays!

Once I woke up, I grabbed a bag of turkey jerky and sat down at the computer, and I managed to get another 1600+ words done on the first book.  That's just about three-and-a-half single-spaced pages on Word with a 12 pt. font--just enough for a chapter.   I have no idea how much that is on a standard printed book page, but I want people to feel like they got their money's worth.  I hate buying a book and finding out that it's only 180 pages long.  Anyhow, I think I now have four completed chapters (but all are still waiting to be edited).  If I had to nail down a target, I'm hoping for about 28-32 chapters when all is said and done but it may go even longer than that. 

Right now it's pretty tough going; even though I'm writing a memoir-style book about my time in Las Vegas, that first year I was there, I hardly blogged at all, so I have to go back and fill in all the holes from the beginning, but then I've also got to give all the pre-Vegas background stories, too. And y'all know how I can just crank out the words once I get going, so this thing might end up being thicker than a Betty Crocker cookbook. I hope Linda Lou's got her editing pencil sharpened, because I don't think she has any idea what she's volunteered for.

I remember hearing once, when I was a teenager, that in the entire Bible, there were only 36 or 39 days written about Jesus' life.  Even if you take out the Old Testament, that's still a helluva book centered around eight weeks of activities.  I'm finding that each chapter, so far, covers one particular day that fits into the narrative arc. And I was there for almost six years--this project could get out of hand!  I might come away from this thinking Tolstoy was a piker.

Anyhow, I've got a couple more lectures to watch today, plus do a little more reading, and maybe crank out another chapter, too.  I may even get motivated to pick up the bass and run some scales for a half hour during the Cardinal's game later this afternoon.

So that's the news today.  And oh by the way, you wanna guess where I found my phone charger that night?  Yep, in the dryer.  Just like all those wallets in the old days, until I bought this huge Fossil thing that that's bigger than a checkbook (still haven't washed *it* yet, knock on wood).

Anyhow, more to come...



laura said...

good luck with the novel. I am looking forward to being one of the first to buy it. I know it will be a great book based on your blog.

Hurricane Mikey said...

Hey Laura--

Thanks. It's not going to be a novel, it's going to be a true-story memoir, written in first person. Yeah, I'm lifting a lot of material from the blog, but I've got to rework some of the entries, edit them a bit, and then find some way to string the material together so that it makes a good story from beginning to end. It's a lot harder than I thought it would be.


Moe said...

Really looking forward to the book!


norm said...

Great to read you are working on the book! (Hope it tells ALL)