Tag Archives: health

It’s a trap — and I walked right into it!

Not really trapped but I do perhaps feel a little hemmed in. As it’s by good stuff and I had a good week, perhaps it’s more that I’m a bird in a gilded cage?

Yesterday McFarland mailed me the PDF of The Aliens Are Here for me to proof, edit and index. This is quite a job, especially the unimaginable tedium of indexing. Due by early September (the book comes out late that month). And wouldn’t you know, after a couple of months of quiet, Leaf suddenly has a ton of articles available. And one of my other clients wants me to do an accounting article.

I think this will rule out any chance of writing any more fiction this month. But that’s okay: I knew the proofs would arrive, I know from experience how much time it takes so I was prepared to drop everything. Well, except the paying stuff.

Oh, and I have a story I need to approve the edits on. I got an email Monday offering to buy Death Is Like a Box of Chocolates and of course I said yes. I got the email today saying they’d done the edits, would I take a look please? But hey, that’s a job I’ll do with pleasure.

I’ve also got some work to do on promoting Questionable Minds. That’ll have to wait, but it can’t wait too long.

But that’s a boatload of sudden deadlines when I normally don’t have any. I’m not really complaining because it’s all good, I just wish the timing had been spaced out. Still, having too much work as a freelancer is better than not having enough work.

Prior to everything heating up, I went over Don’t Pay the Ferryman and I think it’s in good shape. I’m ready to give it a final edit, but obviously not right now. And I finished this draft of Impossible Takes a Little Longer. It’s not looking as good but a first shot at replotting went surprisingly easily. Possibly the problems are more fixable than I thought. Again, not something to tackle right now.

Oh, I also had a filling adjusted yesterday. And posted a couple of articles at Atomic Junkshop, one on the debut of Marvel’s SHIELD and another on comic reboots that missed the point.

#SFWApro. All rights to image remain with current holders.

Leave a comment

Filed under Impossible Takes a Little Longer, Nonfiction, Short Stories, Time management and goals, Writing

It feels like a suety puddingy week, but I did get good stuff done.

For starters I finished my rewrite of Southern Discomfort. Next week I read the revised first chapter to the writing group, edit the synopsis, do a quick last-minute error check (were their places I left Maria’s scenes in third person?) and send it off.

I also finished some finance writing that should put some cash in my pocket, so that’s great.

And Wisp stayed in one night this week, which was nice. Here she is lying out on the deck.

And I participated in an online panel for the online Con-Tinual con created by my friend Gail Z. Martin. You can also access Con-Tinual on FB, rather than that YouTube link. Either way, the panel I was on, on female sleuths and killers, isn’t available yet, but I’ll link when it is.

And I posted a couple of Atomic Junkshop posts about DC’s Captain Action: one on the toyline and first issue, one on the remaining four issues. Feel free to check out my review of the TPB last Sunday too.

So why the suet feeling? Well, last weekend I developed an inexplicable rash which didn’t go away, so Tuesday I took time out of the day to see my doctor (who happily had some time to spare). She provided a skin cream that eliminated whatever it was so it’s mostly gone now. But that left me off-balance Tuesday. Wednesday I got up late after the Con-Tinual session Tuesday night and barely had thirty minutes before the dogs woke up and came down. That wasn’t enough time to get my head in the game.

But I did get Southern Discomfort done and it will go out next week. That was my big goal this month, so I shall celebrate accomplishing it. Go me!

#SFWApro. Cover by Kane, as is the Steve Ditko-style scene below from the origin of Action’s arch-foe, Doctor Evil!

3 Comments

Filed under Nonfiction, Personal, Southern Discomfort, The Dog Ate My Homework, Writing

Dizziness and diarrhea

No, not my diarrhea. Last Saturday, Trixie suddenly got the squirtles, requiring me to walk her in the early morning. And again, about an hour later. And again 90 minutes later. Every time I’d drift off to sleep, she’d get the need. Not a good night.

I almost lost my temper with her a couple of times, which would have been wrong. It’s not her fault and she was doing her best not to poop on the floor. She’s a good dog and it wasn’t her fault. Fortunately her tummy returned to normal after that night.

In more cheery news, my vertigo is just barely a thing now. I do my exercises regularly and I’ve gone to physical therapy to get some added exercises to try. Occasionally I still get a brief moment, but nothing serious; hopefully it’ll go completely before too long.

I was skeptical about physical therapy’s role in the process but it helps. Doing vertigo exercises is unpleasant — it makes things worse at first — so having someone push me makes it a lot easier to keep at them. And the results speak for themselves.

#SFWApro.

1 Comment

Filed under Personal

As expected, a slight drop in productivity

As I’ve mentioned frequently in this week-in-review posts, if I’m performing way above average or way below average the odds are that by random chance I’ll do less well the following week. When I’m at my very best it’s just easier to drop to a lower level than stay at the top. That’s the nature of averages.

So unsurprisingly, this wasn’t as good a week as the previous two. For one thing I gave myself Wednesday off: I had to take the car in for annual inspection and checkup and decided I’d just bring a book rather than my computer. Then I kept reading that afternoon. It felt good, so no regrets. We also had the housekeepers in Thursday. I thought we’d be dealing with the new dishwasher Tuesday but that fell through — there’s a part that was out (supply chain issues) so we’re rescheduled for a couple of weeks.

My dizziness continues but at a much reduced level so my daily exercises are apparently fixing things or buying time for them to fix themselves. I could drive safely to the car place and back so that’s good enough. I’m sticking with exercises that do not involve heavy head-jerking for now, though.

This week’s big breakthrough was figuring out the problem with the ending of Oh the Places You’ll Go! My new ending, with everyone in the future world of 2015, works much better though it does need some fixing and editing. I also figured out that the problem with Adventure of the Red Leech is the third quarter: there’s a lot of necessary exposition but no tension, nothing to up the stakes. I don’t quite know how to fix it yet, though.

Other than that, it was mostly Leafs, plus a new client asking for similar business articles. Better paying per article but not as many articles available.

And I had to resolve a problem with a couple of missing photos from the set I sent in as illustrations for The Aliens Are Here. All taken care of now.

All in all, not bad for the last week of the month. Month-in-review post will come next week.

#SFWApro. All rights to image remain with current holder.

2 Comments

Filed under Nonfiction, Personal, Short Stories, Story Problems, Time management and goals

Not the cool Alfred Hitchcock kind of vertigo

So Saturday, as I laid back on the floor in my stretching routine, the room — not so much spin, but it felt like it was rocking. I had vertigo. Which is way unpleasant, even in mild cases.

As it could theoretically be something serious, I hit the nearby urgent care. They said as it could theoretically be something serious, I should go to Duke E/R for a CAT scan, just to determine it wasn’t intercranial bleeding, a stroke or the like. TYG drove me down (as I mentioned Monday) and the staff went into emergency triage mode because strokes are manageable if they’re treated fast. Much to my amusement, several residents showed up to watch the process, just like on an episode of Scrubs. I was a teachable moment!

Impressed though I was with their swiftness, once they determined I was not in peril mortal, the swiftness disappeared. I got out of the CATscan around noon. 4 PM we were still waiting for someone to wrap things up and remove the various wires and IV hooked up to me. And we couldn’t get to the cafeteria — I just had to wait on the bed, staring at my surroundings (above).  Good thing we both brought plenty to read.

The fun trip finally wrapped up a little after four; while I don’t doubt they had higher profile emergencies to tackle (this was, after all, the emergency room) it wasn’t as if they had to give me a long consult before sending me out into the world. Just here’s the money, here’s the prescription, here’s a flyer on anti-vertigo exercises. bye now! So it felt very long and frustrating, particularly as we couldn’t get from where we were to the cafeteria to eat during our stay.

This sucked up most of Saturday and with my vertigo, I had to settle for Amazon delivery Sunday rather than food shopping, or doing much else. Still I do appreciate the speed with which everyone got me treated. Just in case it hadn’t been harmless.

Tuesday I say my regular doctor and she went into more detail about the exercises. It’s a lot of head twisting to get everything inside back in alignment, and it’s helping. It’s unpleasant, and involves a lot of initial nausea, but I do feel better afterwards. So I’m feeling much less miserable now.

#SFWApro.

7 Comments

Filed under Personal

The endgame is on, the finish line in sight.

But there’s still a lot of fighting to do! Not for the first time, this Billy Graham cover sums up the way I feel.But come Monday, it will be done other than the mechanics of mailing off the illustrations.

I was mildly surprised that when I went for my regular checkup Thursday neither my blood pressure nor my weight has exploded despite stress and a lack of time to exercise. I’ll take the win.

#SFWApro.

Leave a comment

Filed under Personal, Writing

Got my booster vax!

Happily I didn’t suffer any ill effects other than a sore arm so I gained some extra work time (I’d planned for a couple of dies lying inert. As I’ll be going to the movies to catch Eternals next week, I figure it’s just as well to be extra vaccinated.

I don’t have a good image for my vaccination so here’s a photo of Wips and Snowdrop waiting on the front steps to be fed.If I have the energy I’ll post this afternoon. If not, this will serve as my week in review post.

#SFWApro.

3 Comments

Filed under Personal

Despite a moment of panic, this week went well

So after my crown went in Wednesday, I celebrated by having a meal of crunchy granola … and felt a grinding sensation, not from my crown but the cap on the other side. And when I checked with my tongue, I found it was missing. So I called the dentist … and it turned out I was imagining it. No gap that wasn’t there before. Everything’s fine. It still feels funny, but I’m confident my dentist is more objective than I am.

Leaf articles didn’t start back up until the end of the week so I put in a lot of time on Alien Visitors. I have three chapters and the introduction in good, though rough shape; barring disaster, it is actually doable by deadline. I do have to start ordering posters and photos as illustrations though — I’ve left that too long. My original plan was to buy them a couple each month; it won’t be easy to absorb now, but it’ll be manageable. I watched fewer movies than planned, but I’m still on track there, too.

I also started on the final proof of Undead Sexist Cliches and began to think about marketing, promotion, book blurbs (trigger warnings will be a must — some of this stuff I’m critiquing is creepy as shit).

Less than a couple of months and both books will be done. Then it’s back to fiction at last.

And now, time to put up the computer and relax. Have fun, y’all.

#SFWApro. All rights to image remain with current holder.

Leave a comment

Filed under Nonfiction, Time management and goals, Undead Sexist Cliches: The Book, Writing

My eyes are fine!

I had yet another medical appointment this week. This time it was my much delayed — a year, about — eye checkup. Turns out nothing in my eyes exploded and my vision remains constant, so no need for new lenses. I’m cool with this. Much less scary than this Ron Wilson cover —And less dramatic than this Joe Kubert cover.I’m quite happy to have my eyes neither scary nor dramatic.

#SFWApro. All rights to images remain with current holder.

1 Comment

Filed under Personal

Medical labyrinth Monday!

Close to a decade ago, I discovered I had an aneurysm. Major freakout followed until the brain surgeon assured me it was so small it would be malpractice to work on it — lots of people have one. However it is necessary to check on it regularly to see that it’s not expanding. This Monday I went in for an MRI.

Getting to the lab turned out surprisingly complicated. Driving up the road alongside the hospital, I passed the entrance that said EMERGENCY PATIENTS — not noticing that underneath it, in much smaller prints, the sign said Outpatients. I tried the next entrance (attempting to interpret my GPS), which turned out to be staff. Tried the one after that, parked, went inside, learned it was the wrong entrance. And because of Covid, I assume, I couldn’t just make my way back to the MRI wing.

So after a little more driving I finally saw the Outpatients notice, went inside and followed a long, windy path back to the machine. I didn’t have to remove my belt, but I felt a strong magnetic pull on it as my head went into the MRI. That was a very freaky sensation; if I ever have to write about what it feels like to be yanked telekinetically, I shall definitely incorporate that feeling.

Happily, the aneurysm is still quiescent. And finding my way out of the building and the parking lot was slightly less frustrating than the journey inward.

#SFWApro. Cover by Jack Kirby, inks by Ditko, all rights remain with current holder.

1 Comment

Filed under Personal