welcome back

Tinnitus is pretty bad, but I can hear again today, after spending an entire day wallowing around in the sound of silence, where everything got to feel like it’s underwater.

I can enjoy Fiona Apple again! Yay!

And I slept, sort of. With heavy drugs and a double dose of NyQuil.

Hopefully, this is me on the mend.

The dog loves my nieces. You should have seen her. Prancy dancing around the living room and foyer like she’d never seen anything more exciting in her life.

And yes, we have a foyer, but that’s because we bought a Chatham icon’s old house; the author of Romantic Kent built the place with servants and no plumbing. A hundred years later, it has plumbing, a secret set of what we call murder stairs beneath the shower and an endless stream of problems.

A money pit, really.

Bukowski would hate me, but we’d have some good times. We could talk about cats.

Target: 1400 words
Written: 415 words, novel: Father Lightning

another night

Another inability to sleep. I took two big swigs of NyQuil and a purple gummy my daughter swears is sleep-inducing and totally not weed.

I didn’t get stoned, so I guess she wasn’t lying.

Although, at this point, a little break from my brain might be kind of nice. I’m never big on the inability to focus when it comes to marijuana though; I’m more of a magic mushrooms and booze kind of guy.

Which reminds me. I read On Cats by Bukowski yesterday.

I have so far to go.

Target: 1400 words
Written: 2180 words, novel: Father Lightning

back to the thing

To the work. Father Lightning is proceeding well. A first draft (aka, an excessively detailed outline) is almost done. Just a couple of scenes left to write (including the last scene, which I’m going to write three ways and see what feels right).

Then, onto the editing phase, which is always a delight.

Target: 1400 words
Written: 689 words, novel: Father Lightning

home james

Yes, home please. It’s been a long weekend, and I have shit I have to do.

Dog beds to buy. Dogs to pick up. Cats to snuggle.

Books to read. Books to write.

Comics. Maybe a nice cold beer.

Take me home or lose me forever, said a bad movie with severely toxic male role models.

Target: 1400 words
Written: 800 words, novel: Father Lightning


I’m having difficulty focusing. I know we’re going away this weekend, and I’ve only just caught up on all the stuff I missed while galavanting around France, and I don’t want to fall behind again.

As always, I yearn for the simple life. One where all I do is read, write and cook, with the occasional bouts of meditation and healthy exercise, a trip or two, some nice sex and a close-knit group of non-judgmental, drama free friends and family.

Pipe dreams, all. Living the dream is an illusion. People will always let you down. Life will always intrude. Happy lives are for rom-com movies and bad TV shows.

Target: 1400 words
Written: 1648 words, novel: Father Lightning


And grocery shopping. Basically, all I can do today. All in all, I thought I did a pretty good job of keeping it together at work and getting things done.

Surprising after the brain fog of the last few days. Work continues on the novel as well, a little, so take that, COVID.

I can still do shit, even when I’m sick. Norovirus was worse.

Target: 1300 words
Written: 257 words, novel: Father Lightning

lazy sunday

Why not? We’re on the tail end of COVID, tired after a long journey, trying to get back into the swing of normal life.

Writing. Reading. Comics. That’s all I really need. Exercise and meditation for the body and mind. Music for the spirit. Cooking as an alternate outlet for creativity and experience.

Anything else is gravy. Movies, television, video games, sex, travel, other various storytelling mediums… gravy.

Target: 1300 words
Written: 2326 words, novel: Father Lightning

interesting lack of feelings

I should be more excited about going to France. I should be. I know. Ten days in Bordeaux and Paris, touring wine country and not seeing the Mona Lisa (again!) while at the Louvre?

I feel like I should be hyped, but I think I’m so wallowed in my present exhaustion to get excited. It’s like that for all travel now. No interest. No anticipatory glee. Only a grudging willingness to pack and a curse that this is going to mean no down time for the new future.

I’ve rarely remembered being so tired as I have in the last year. From the psychotic stress of the last job, to the intense learning period of the new one, to unhealthy and/or dying parents and pets, COVID, Donald Trump and the negative news cycle, to competing with depression for the ability to do or remember anything properly, it’s been one long trial after another, and while travelling to another country sounds like a great way to get away and will I’m sure be fun, it also means I won’t get much done while I’m gone. It will be a lot of walking and moving and eating, and probably acid reflux, and I will come back as burnt out or more than when I left. What I need is a few days of routine; of relative ease.

A long weekend where we don’t do anything but read, write, play video games and maybe enjoy a beer or two and some good, relaxing, playful sex.

Perfect, right?

Far better than returning to the Louvre after 30 years to find out that it’s not fucking open on the only day you can go, which is almost worse than when you went as a teenager on exchange and the Mona Lisa was “closed for cleaning”, because at least there’s a lot of other cool stuff to see. Good thing it’s overrated, or I’d feel worse about that. Picnics in the park, anyone?

Maybe I’ll go find Jim Morrison’s grave again. Or will that be closed as well?

Target: 1300 words
Written: 41 words, novel: Father Lightning

successful first day

I think so. I got everything they threw at me done and came back for more. Some kinks to work out, I’m sure, and a routine that needs to get down, but I’ll get there.

All in all, I actually had fun yesterday. I’m sure over time, the novelty of a job that’s not entirely terrible will wear off, and I’ll discover who is playing politics, who is causing the stress levels to rise and who just doesn’t give a fuck about what they do, but for now, I’m trying to simply enjoy the work.

That, and get some writing done. Always writing.

Target: 1300 words
Written: 1865 words, novel: Father Lightning

in the mix

Training is over. Finally. Part of me is happy about this, happy to get started in the day to day of the work, rather than some long boring lessons or repetitive exercises. On the other hand, the kid gloves are off; the safety factor is gone.

It’s time to put up or shut up or get the hell out.

That’s still the plan, by the way, if I can make a living writing. At my age, it’s increasingly looking like that might not be the case.

Then again, lots of people had strong second acts, so who knows? Maybe if I learn to market myself a little and demonstrate I’m a decent, forward-thinking human being, I can eke out a niche and have a few faithful friends.

Target: 1300 words
Written: 1924 words, novel: Father Lightning