I know this is from earlier this year on THAT anniversary but I feel it i perfect for today. You may have noticed I have been UNUSUALLY quiet lately. WEll, rest assured friend I have been dealing with the uppermost issue which affects many people at this particular time of the year... Too much to do in too little time, and despite all my 'welllness lessons' in 2010 I still put my own needs to the bottom of the list.
How is it that when you are REALLY busy, people always ask fro extra help.. (you know that old cliche that when you need something done ask a busy person)? Well if we are that good at time manegment we wouldn't look so bloody obviously busy!
So what had been going on... two important Conference Papers, numerous job applications which everybody knows takes so much time just tweaking the small bits to match the criteria to the 'T'... or is that tee?
Add to this a fresh new start on my PhD first chapter of the exegesis. YEP youe've read that right ANOTHER FRESH START... that make's Take 6 at Draft one!"
It appears that I am one of those candidates who seems destined not to be able to draft my rough work up to standard and that it is expected to virtually hit the mark in the first go!
So do I get to the subsequent chapters? Only in flow charts, mind maps (can you imagine those!), dot points, coded and marked references, research notes compiled and located in relevant colour-coded folders, but the actual first drafting of these chapters... ya gotta be kidding! And this despite every chapter having a corrseponding Conference paper or presentation!
Would you believe it has taken me over three years to begin to trust my own writing techiques... you know the ones that actually get me published.
- Write it out free flowing, just to see for stuctural cohesion.
- Redraft for voice.style consistency, then
- back through to add supporting evidence without repeating (or padding) what the previously published experts say, then
- sending to a reviewer/referee/ outisde editor for CONSTRUCTIVE commentary and objective critiscism of the writing's weakness NOT MY OWN!
Well, that's the way I am going now and believe me it appears to be bringing the wrath of the academic gods, onto my head.
So what I say.
It work for me. I am now only just able to say I KNOW this is right and will hang together and no longer feel the need to defend and justify myself all the way through the writing which invariably weakens the strength of the piece.
All so logical when looked at calmly and rationally!
Pity is that very few PhDers are able to do just that, due to the pressure and stress of both external expectations and inner self-doubt.
Now I am just dying (metaphorically) for the time when I can actually swing back into my creative work and just let the characters have free reign, even should their stories appear (as has been commented) implausible or cliched. Cliche is when something is so common it is boxed and categorized... so believe me when I say in my novel most of these women's experiences are 'easily' boxed and labelled cliched and self-indulgent.
I just want to write with authenticity and artistic freedom at last. I am NOT, repeat NOT writing capitla "l" Literature!
This time is coming and very shortly, so my deepest blackes( -4 periods) are drawing to a close, even though to many outside observers I have been functioing at +4 in the professional/public domian. We all know what that means, and the inner determination and cognitive resources required to pull that off successfully.
May I proudly announce I am making it without recourse to any form of respite hospitalisation, medication re-qdjustments at all. (Despite contstantly articulated predictions)
This is HUGE.
As many readers of this blog understand, it is not called the silly season for nothing... even the 'normal' amongst us feel compelled to 'play act happy families and western cultural myths'. For many despite being surrounded by so-called loving and supportive family, IT IS THE LONELIEST TIME OF THE YEAR.
At leas,t I just did the role this year and ignored the expectations.
I am alone but reasonably happy as loneness in itself allows me time to reflect on the important people in my life who are no longer with me; my dear mother, Ivy (who would adore the fact I do the whole baking thing from her generation), my Dad, Ted (who would be a tad disappointed that I didn't say stuff you to adult son and climb the bloody roof and bedeck the house with all the glowing lights... but he would be proud that I finally took a stand of independence), my brother Kevin (who has been so uppermost in my mind these last years when I think of him dying within the darkness of the mine's confined space... now that its the ultimate alone-ness... I have no right to self-pity), to my brother Ron (who has taught me that we do in fact reap what we sow, but nevertheless no person should die alone without at least one person by their side), and to the georgeous Michelle who never took life too seriously, and the beautiful Dizzy who unfortunately did. And to Terence and my darling Billy, and the many others taken by one of the globe's unnecessary and curable diseases. Today I dedicate to you all and promise to give thanks for just being here and giving it my best shot no matter what.