I just don't know where that world is.
I hurt my foot last week so all my plans for the last few days of my annual leave have been ruined, rather. I can't go back to work either, which I'm suddenly longing to do because the problems of my life are so gargantuan (or they feel that way to me) that playing with dusty books seems like quite a lot of fun. Needless to say, working in a library (trolleys with books, big piles of books, lugging books, climbing ladders with books.......) and a sore foot don't go together. Since I've run out of money this month and can't go anywhere, my only escape is working on my second draft. And it's going well - not brilliantly, but well. I still can't work out my male character but have realised I'm going to have to do that on the page. I have had a few flashes of inspiration regarding other problematic areas in the novel. The best one was working out the conflict between my lovers. Inspiration came to me while I was on the cross-trainer at the gym, listening to Marilyn Manson on my iPod. Yes, thanks, just when there's no paper handy......fortunately, I managed to remember the important bits until I got home and could write them down. Unfortunately, I think it was on the cross-trainer that I may have hurt my foot. Which leads me to believe that for everything you get given, something else gets taken away. In the last week, I've been quite desperate to crawl into a world of magic to get away from so much pain and frustration and hardship.
I just don't know where that world is.
I should say that this is probably the first time I've ever actively gone from writing the first draft, stopping just moments before the Big Reveal, and sitting down consciously to write a second draft. In the past I've worked on sections when needed, going back when something doesn't work, reworking when something fails. But then I've never had an entire novel fail on me before so this is a new experience. I'm having to invent ways of approaching this second draft. A lighter touch might be the key.
Bad week. Bad, bad week. Thought I'd cheer myself up today but instead I got bad, bad, bad, bad, bad hair. I wish I could rewind the day and start again. Might have stayed at home then and saved myself a whole lot of money AND sheer utter awful despair. And yes, I know it's only hair and it'll grow back (in about four fucking months)(roll on Christmas) and that there are people out there who are dying in wars and trying to escape and would like to be safe, never mind their hair, so, really, I do know what's important and what isn't. But it doesn't change the fact that I look terrible, I feel terrible and my finger hurts.
Starbucks have been handing out sample breakfasts this week, with a 50% voucher, so after my rather awful week, I thought I'd treat myself today and cheer myself up. It's been a tough week at work, triple the amount of work than usual. Also my vacuum cleaner broke just when I thought I might recover financially this month after a really expensive August (school clothes, school shoes and holiday type spending......) so had to rush out and buy another one, so am broke all over again and it's only the 4th of the month.
So off I went to have my scrambled eggs at Starbucks and a nice cup of tea (no coffee - I'm on diet too, just to add to my sorrows) and pulled the chair forward to sit down, as you do, and caught my finger in a join under the chair that shouldn't have been there. The instant blood blister was the size of a grape, on the soft pad of my forefinger (it's agony typing here....) and I almost burst into tears at the PAIN of it. Went and got some ice eventually and got lots of sympathy from the manager and a barista - needless to say, they took the offending chair away. But that still left me with the sorest finger you can imagine. Couldn't tell you what the scrambled eggs tasted like. I might have been in shock.
Never mind, I thought desperately, off to have my hair cut now. THAT will make me feel better. I've had many ups and downs with Mr Leo on Tottenham Court Road. Have walked out with terrible cuts but also some really excellent ones, and for only £20 too. However, it's never been cut too short - how is my JAW the same as my SHOULDER?????? I said shoulder length - it's so far above my shoulder that it'll take MONTHS for it to grow back down there again. And worse - IT'S SKEW. Oh, that's because he cut it in a middle path and now it's in a side path. OH NO IT FUCKING ISN'T - IT'S SKEW SKEW SKEW SKEW. The left side is an inch longer than the right! Any idiot can see that!
And it makes me look old old old old. What you would call age-appropriate. I could ALMOST tolerate the too-shortness - after all, hair grows. But skew? What do I do with that? I can't even tie it up properly into a ponytail because it's too short! And I can't wear a hat all the time or wear one indoors.
So: no stars for Mr Leo. Never going back there. Avoid it if you don't want to look like your dead mother. Spending money I don't have on a hair extension and the most expensive hair dye and hair accessories I can find.
I'm quite, quite sure the Bloomsbury writers of yonder years didn't have these problems.......
I live in Bloomsbury.