A few weeks ago I started out a post with "I'm worried about my marriage." Then it devolved into a screed about all the things I've been frustrated about since I went back to work after Maia's birth, and then I took it off Blogger to write and print, and then I put it away because I didn't want Eric to see it. We've been talking about those issues, and I'm trying to work on them. It's tough. I don't know what's changed since Maia was born (...aside from the obvious), but something has, and it's made me discontented. I'm pretty sure it's me, not him, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't work on it.
Anyway. It is now the Christmas season, apparently, as evinced by the Christmas trees put up at work (really? I can kind of understand the giving-tree one because people like to do shopping early, but the others are just for decoration and dude, I like Thanksgiving) and the mint M&Ms in my stomach, and my thoughts have turned to Christmas crafts. They can do this because I am done, done, DONE with Shoelace. Done as in, I sent a query in to a "contest" in which the literary agent promised actual, stream-of-consciousness feedback to all queries sent in at a particular hour (well, she didn't say stream-of-consciousness and that isn't what people got from the sound of the comments, but that's how it sounded to me), thinking I'd get some useful feedback. Then she actually requested the manuscript and I said "Well *!&#" because I'd noticed a problem with the end that I was working on fixing, but hadn't worried about hurrying because what were the chances? The moral of the story here is that it is a bad idea to count on one's ineptitude in one area because it will fail, giving one's ineptitude in other areas a chance to shine. Ahem.
So I have closed the book on Shoelace (which does, in fact, have an actual title...I forget if I've ever mentioned this) and am pondering some background for the next story, currently titled the unfortunately-acronymed Variable Density. What would the Republicans think if there were superheroes running around? That's what I'm wondering.
I found that doing an actual query submission made me think about my writing differently. It's very refreshing. I also recognized, during the frenzied finish-this-quick-so-I-can-send-it session, that writing is a bit like quilting for me in that at some point, I lose all perspective on my own work and can no longer judge its merits because I start seeing it in negative. I don't see the work, I only see what I had wanted it to be but wasn't able to make it. With quilting I ignore that. (It helps that quilts are more difficult to revise than manuscripts.) I should learn to do some of that with writing, too. And then maybe I'll be able to let the next project go after a couple of go-rounds.
And, as I tried to say two paragraphs ago, it's Christmas as far as crafting is concerned. I have a pair of Fiber Fish mittens to make for Chloë, and a quilt to finish for her because she's in need of a big-girl blanket that she doesn't want to lay on the floor and pretend is the beach, which is what she does with the only other big blanket she has, a thick teal number made by Mom. I have to make something for Maia because I feel bad about neglecting her just because she has everything she needs. I want to make some mittens for my niece Rae, because she was interested in Chloë's the last time she was over here, though I'm not positive this wasn't just because it was so cold I was making all the girls wear mittens and hats and she wanted to go outside. And I have handprint wall hangings to make, assuming I can get a good tracing of Maia's. I'll be keeping busy up until Christmas. I prefer it that way. Having crafting time really helps make me feel like a person rather than just a parenting, working automaton.
This post has no direction or cohesion at all, but I wanted to say something, so I feel better. Status: loving my children, ambivalent about my husband, finished my book, pondering the next, ambitious on my Christmas crafts. As Chloë keeps saying these days: Onward!