You Have To Learn To Pace Yourself…

It’s crunch time. I’m feeling the pressure.

My blogging buddy, Older Eyes, was kind enough to once again give me (undeserved) props in his entry today. One wonders what Older Eyes and I see in each other… no pun intended. He’s got a good sense of humor, for sure, but if you read his stuff and you read my stuff, you’ll immediately see that we are not exactly two peas in a proverbial pod. Aside from the 30+ year age difference and the fact that we live on exact opposite coasts of the country, there are other differences as well. (He’s consciously working the steps; I’m consciously trying to figure out how to turn my empty-bottle wine rack into a full-bottle wine rack. Just for instance.) But what I appreciate about his stuff is that it’s thoughtful, and it’s true to what’s on his mind at the time he writes it. It’s diverse, which is to say it tells the story of a life that’s been complete before (hopefully long before) it’s been completed. It’s as likely to make you smile serenely as it is to make you think. It’s gentle and sometimes rather zen. It reminds me of my better self.

My stuff, on the other hand, fairly smacks you in the face. I’m not a violent person, so if you met me you might find me much more like Older Eyes than you’d think, but apparently my process of self-expression is a tad different.

So today, my buddy Older Eyes tells his entire reading universe of readers about my blog. And I totally appreciate the nod. I really do. It’s so great when other writers find your writing to be promising.

But Bud, I gotta tell ya… I’m a little stressed now.

I love to make people laugh-slash-think, but my last entry was rather short on laughter, since it was about Osama bin Laden. Jeff Dunham’s Achmed the Dead Terrorist: funny. Osama bin Laden: rather not. So I’ve been trying to figure out what to do as a follow-up. Now I’ve got a challenge on my hands.

This must be how President Obama felt after he won the Nobel Peace Prize.

I sat here and sat here, fingertips tapping the keys in no particular order, trying to figure out something witty and sharp to say so Older Eyes’ readers wouldn’t click through from his page to mine and go, “bin Laden? That’s not funny,” and write me off entirely. I came up with the fact that today is Cinco de Mayo and, serendipitously, the avacados I bought at the grocery store last week are nearing the overripe stage and I simply must make the intended guacamole today. Apparently I thought this made my Irish and German ass subconsciously connected to this holiday.

You know what I typed next?

“This entry sucks. El Sucko.”

And I scrapped it.

But in hopes of ressurecting myself and lifting up some other bloggers whose brilliance I adore, I present to you this list of nominees for some unnamed award that they should feel no pressure for having received:

Older Eyes – see above
accidentalstepmom – This is the only mommyblog I read, because it’s hilarious and real and it resonates with me.
Twist365 – Jackie is a blog-a-day’er, as is Bud… and she finds humor and irony in everyday life that I appreciate and draw from.
Seasweetie – Nothing makes me happier than photos of the sea. Except for actually being at the sea.
pegoleg – Straight up funny with a dash of “where does she get this stuff?”
japecake – Dude (I’m assuming it’s a dude) is like 75 times smarter than me. It’s amazing what he comes up with. If Jon Stewart and a genius had a baby, and that baby had a blog, it would be japecake.
DavisW – Snark meets spark.
SoonerBlue2 – Politics and irony. Just like the USA.

Isn’t it nice to know you have places to seek higher blogs if you read mine and it blows?

Thank you, Bud. For real.

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Where Do You Write?

There’s apparently a sub-viral meme going around, asking Where Do You Write? I got the question from fellow blogger Older Eyes. Well, I mean, he didn’t ask me directly, but he put it out there and sort of encouraged everyone who read his entry to answer the question with an entry of their own. So.

I write everywhere.

Hahaha, you thought I was done! If you thought I was done, you’ve never read one of my blog entries. I tend toward the loquacious side.

Sometimes I write while I’m sitting on the floor of my living room, with my laptop perched on top of the stereo. This is because I don’t have wifi. Long story, short writing sessions. It ain’t as easy to sit on the floor as it used to be.

When I can’t take that, or I need to spend more time (and an entry almost always takes at least an hour because I’m obsessive about editing, re-editing, re-reading, re-re-reading, etc.), I move the laptop to the kitchen table, where I can look out the window (hopefully unrestrained by the presence of random men on my balcony) and sip a cup of coffee or a glass of water, which I am absolutely certain I will one day spill all over the laptop.

Other times, the laptop actually becomes what it is, and I write while sitting on the couch. If that’s where I am, it’s much more likely that I’m writing late at night, and that the beverage of choice is either a glass of wine or a martini. Which I will probably spill on my couch. Thank God for stain-resistent microfiber.

There are nights when I’ll write in bed. This totally breaks my No Technology In the Bedroom Rule. I do not have a television in my bedroom, and if I have anything to say about it, I never will, because I believe bedrooms should be sanctuaries and that the media of choice should be books. Keeps things relaxed, unencumbered, peaceful and sensual. But since books are allowed, I think writing is allowed, and since my hand tends to cramp up if I try to write longform, I’ll fetch the laptop for these rare occasions when something brews in bed and I just have to get it out.

Something literary, I mean.

I write at work. I mean, I write for work, but sometimes I’ll work on an entry on the side. Devious little thing, aren’t I? In case you’re wondering, if I’m not home or I don’t have free access to wifi, I write drafts in a MSWord file rather than in the draft section of WordPress, mostly because that way I can do it without “surfing the internet.” The good thing about writing at work, I find, is that having something “else” to write while I’m writing what I have to write helps to keep me engaged rather than bored. Plus sometimes there’s just material that’s too good to let go.

I wrote this entry in an airport. And since my people-watching tendencies go into overdrive while I’m in an airport, it’s definitely become the source for several blog ideas. One of them, which may or may not see the light of day, is the fact that fully half of the people who were sitting in the largely business-oriented I Need To Recharge My Laptop/SmartPhone section of the gate are women. And they were working. I wasn’t, but everybody thought I was, because I was typing away on my laptop.

Mind you, I had just read a whole issue of Cosmo, so I felt like I had to do something that looked at least one step above mindless. (Cosmo is not totally mindless, though. I always buy it when I’m sitting in an airport. Once I wade through all the clap-trap about lip gloss and 22-year-old jargon that makes me roll my eyes,  I always find value in certain articles, if you know what I’m sayin’.)

I wrote on the plane on the way there, and I wrote on the plane on the way home.

And I’m constantly writing in my head. Sometimes I’ll write a whole Thing and then by the time I get to a computer all I have to do is type out the fully mentally-edited version. That’s how I wrote the Maid of Honor Toasts I had the… well, honor to give at both my sister’s weddings.

When inspiration strikes, it’s best to get to work before you lose it.