Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Back to work

Today was the day I marked to get back to work on my novel-in-progress, No Neighborhood for Old Women. I started the day with wonderful intentions, got up early, had a blank calendar. By the time I answered emails, read Facebook and Twitter and the newspaper, made the bed, did a laundry, watered the plants, did my yoga and showered, the morning was gone.
After lunch, I went through the entire manuscript and keyed in answers to the questions that a critique partner asked. I figure if they stumped or bothered her as a reader, they would bother others. It wasn't too much work, except that I'd get mixed up between the copy with her questions and my own working copy and have to back up. But her suggestions were most helpful, so a big shout out to Mary Haywood, who has a good novel of her own under way. I also read back through my folder of notes--it's not one-fourth as thick as my folder on the first novel. I'm not sure if that's a bad sign or good. But I found a couple of early ideas that I'd had and discarded--and now I'm cogitating on them again.
But the big thing to me was that it felt like coming home. I was among familiar people that I knew and liked and cared about. Yeah, I know--they're my creation. But they really have taken on a life of their own, and I think that's a good sign. Once started, I am to keep at it as much as possible. But of course tomorrow the post office and the grocery store beckon, and I have a class at night.
Betty and I ate at Uncle Julio's tonight--I love their crispy beef tacos and guacamole. The restaurant has a sentimental charm for me. Colin tended bar there for so long I feared he would make it his profession (he's now an accoutant for five upscale golf courses). I clearly remember one night when Megan, Brandon, and I sat at the far side of the waiting area. Suddenly an ice cube landed in my glass of wine. I looked at the bar to see Colin grinning. He had thrown it quite a distance with unerring accuracy. I was impressed. I was also impressed always by the fact that since my son worked there, I had to tip generously. Since all my kids worked their way through school in restaurants, that was the case in a lot of places I ate. I haven't eaten in Julio's in a while, and it was good to be back there. I resisted but Betty succumbed to the chicken enchiladas with sour cream sauce.
I have to go back to my friends in No Neighborhood now. G'night.

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