Monday, April 15, 2013


This past week of vacation was intended to be devoted to writing . . . and lots of it.  I had, for example, intended on writing an additional 25,000 words to complete a book, and produce several essays and columns for my weekly and monthly deadlines.  But, alas, I had to endure what turned out to be the longest illness of my life.  Whether salmonella, food poisoning, or some quaint version of the Hoosier flu, most of my time was spent battling nausea, diarrhea, and chronic acutethenia and headaches.  I may have even become dehydrated at one point.  I had to drink gallons to regain the balance of my water table.

But enough about sickness . . .

Let it be known that I wrote nonetheless.  Maybe not my best prose, but I wrote.  Through pain, through Pepto-Bismol, with one eye closed and brains pounding out of my skull, I wrote.  I didn't reach my goal of 25,000 words, but I wrote.  I also exchanged a fair amount of correspondence with publishers and editors and some of them even urged me on.  I sometimes felt pistol-whipped, but I couldn't let them down, could I? 

Actually, I can't remember the last time I had a five-day illness.  Ever.  Not even as a kid.  I never did get the perfect attendance pin at school, but I never missed a deadline, either.  

Nevertheless, it's difficult to acknowledge that this bug decreased my productivity by a good margin.  The only good to come of it was:

* Lots of sympathy from my darling, who was incredibly patient and kind when she came home from work each day and asked . . . Have you done anything worthwhile and can I make you some chicken soup? (Answer was always "no" and "no".)
* Artwork arrived for a new book cover
* I didn't have to shave for a week

But now that I'm back to normal I'll get those 25,000 words in soon.  I just have to cram them, mathematically, into my daily output.  There's room in there somewhere, and maybe an additional hour every morning.  

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