Sunday, October 05, 2008

Laundry Day: A White-Knuckled Emotional Roller Coaster Ride

I went grocery shopping yesterday morning, and while I was in the meat section I noticed that stew meat was on sale and thought, “I should make beef stew,” so I put the stew meat in my cart and moved on.
As I struggled to maneuver through the obstacle course of children and old people, it occurred to me that I wasn’t sure if I’d ever made beef stew before, so I didn’t know what ingredients beyond the obvious went into the making of it, and as a result didn’t know what I had on hand at home that would be suitable for stew or what I would need to buy.
I decided that I would buy the stew meat anyway and just look up some recipes when I got home, then go out today to pick up what I needed.
So going out and picking up what I needed and getting the stew started provided the big excitement for today.
That is, until I started on the laundry. That always gets the heart pounding and the adrenaline racing.
The other day I was reminded by one of the comments over at Slacktivist that National Novel Writing Month is coming up, and I must confess that I’d forgotten.
Long-time Threshold readers may recall that I participated in 2004 and 2005, and may also remember that I was, to put it mildly, less than pleased with the results of my efforts.
Sure, I was pleased to learn that I was up to the challenge of stringing 50,000 words into a semi-coherent narrative in under a month, but the actually stories were, well, shitty.
I’d intended to give it another shot in 2006, but I ended up spending the second half of October back in the U.P. when my dad died, and when I returned to VA on October 31, the thought of sitting down the next day and launching what felt to me like a pointless exercise in vanity was the furthers thing from my mind.
Getting laid off last year meant that I had plenty of time to devote to the task, but I had other things on my mind, obviously.
As for this year, I’m tempted, but my five day work week means that there are more time constraints than there had been in previous years, and honestly, I don’t really have anything to write about.
Not really knowing what to write about, and having only plot elements rather than an actual plot, contributed to the overall shittiness of my previous efforts, and this year I’m still missing an idea with a beginning, middle, and end.
Sure, I could revisit some of my older ideas that actually are plotted out, but for one thing I’d like to come up with something new, and for another, I’m at a point where I kind of hate every idea I’ve ever come up with.
So basically it seems pretty likely that another year is going to pass without my participation.
Still, I encourage any of you who are willing to devote the time and do have something to write about to give it a shot. Successfully completing the challenge is very satisfying and, even if, like me, you find that you absolutely despise each and every one of the 50,000 words you cranked out, it’s definitely worth the time; don’t let my general negativity serve as any kind of indication of how worthwhile the endeavor actually is, or could be for you.
In any case, I suppose I should get back the roller coaster of emotions that is laundry day.


lbugsh2 said...

How was the beef stew, and I will trade your laundry for my laundry. I think I do about 5 to 8 loads a week. =)

Heimdall said...

I haven't actually had any of the stew yet, but it smells good.
As for the laundry swap, no deal.
My poor heart would never be able to withstand that much excitement.
Besides, there has to be some benefit to being a loveless loner.

Merlin T Wizard said...

Have you thought of doing an auto-biographical novel? Maybe auto-semi-biographical? I love hearing the stories you tell from the crazy days of youth. They would make a good read. Though I suppose in order for it to be a novel, there would have to be an underlying narrative. Still, it's an idea.