It's been a while since I've written a real post (I'm not counting yesterday's rant), because working on two projects has diverted all my creative energies. But this morning I cracked the 80% mark on the conference paper [new material], and I've been able to get the introduction and first chapter of my copy-edits done, so I'm feeling a bit more relaxed, at least for the moment.
So, as I've said before, this is an ambitious semester, in terms of writing. A draft of an article, a polished conference paper (for November), a draft of another one (for May), and the copy-edits on the book. January will be Big Conference, packing up for sabbatical leave, and preparations for a three-month research trip. So, I'm busy. There are other things, too -- pesky things on the "teaching" and "service" front, but I'm just not looking at them. This is a marathon semester, rather than a sprint, so I keep my eyes on the next tree or telephone poll that I'm running to pass. Mini-meltdowns are going to all be part of the process, I figure.
I didn't plan it this way. It just kind of happened. But in case some of you were thinking of doing this on purpose, here's what I've given up so far, 7 weeks into the process:
- a clean apartment
- a stocked refrigerator
- getting home from the office before 8 p.m.
- sleeping past 6:30 a.m.
- clean hair
- taking pictures
- long walks with neighbor C.
- phone conversations with friends (except those lasting less than 10 minutes)
- e-mail correspondence
- any social life whatsoever
- falling asleep before I'm utterly exhausted (otherwise the anxiety keeps me awake)
Oddly enough, I've managed not to get sick, despite all the colds and flus in the air, and despite hosting a sniffly six year-old for 48 hours last weekend. Honestly, I think it's the same phenomenon as the two weeks leading to the nearly simultaneous submission of my MS and my tenure file last year: the adrenaline seemed to act as a temporary immune system boost. But this isn't healthy in the long run, right?
In any case, my colleagues lately have been stopping by my office with helpful suggestions. Two think I should start dating (yeah, right -- with what time?); one thinks I should take up drinking (a world of no); another says I need sleep (this one strikes me as reasonable), but also deep-fried foods.
I'm tempted to go with the standing suggestion of my old friend the Wizard Chimp: "Mmmmm...chocolate..."