Sunday, December 27, 2009

My writing week 51

Hi all,

I had an okay Christmas day with family, enjoying cooking lobster tails for the first time.

Christmas gave me a great excuse to do little writing, but I'm looking forward to the start of the new year to really get stuck into it again. A couple of ideas for short stories have flashed into my head, so I might begin the year with some writing before resuming the editing of Stalking Tigers.

For those proclaiming the book is dead, it might survive a few more years as a report on the radio said that 70% of Australians gave someone a book at Christmas, making books the most popular present. No mention of Kindles either. I gave two books as gifts and received two as gifts, as well as a Collins' book voucher. Both books I received where by Australian authors too.

The London Times had a list of the best 100 books of the decade - even though the decade still has one year to run - and a science-fiction book, The Road, topped the list - even though its author, Cormac McCarthy, would probably be offended by it being classified as science fiction. I thought it was the best novel I read last year, and one of the best I have read in the past decade. I reviewed it here.

I have read five other of the books on the list: 72 The True History of the Kelly Gang, Peter Carey; 54 Eats, Shoots and Leaves, Lynne Truss; 22 The Amber Spyglass, Philip Pulman; 19 The Corrections, Jonathon Frazen; and 7 The Life of Pi, Yann Martel. I don't disagree with any of them making the list.

Happy new year. I am looking forward to a much better 2010.


Sunday, December 20, 2009

My writing week 47-50

Hi all,

It's been a while since I had the time to write a new post, time in which life has changed a bit for me. I also haven't written much in the past four weeks, resulting in very little to report on the writing front.

So what's been happening? My father survived the removal of a tumour on his bladder, but the experience has worsened his dementia. He suffers from vascular dementia, and we think he might have suffered a/some mini strokes while he was in hospital. He no longer can tell the difference between night and day, and gets up to shower and eat breakfast at anytime of night. He also constantly goes to the toilet. My mother is getting very little sleep and has to try and ignore his nocturnal wanderings if she is going to avoid a breakdown herself. Medication just seems to make his condition worse, with him collapsing in the kitchen last week. We are getting differing assessments of his dementia from a variety of people, some say he would be easily re-assessed as high level care, others say no. We have to wait until January the 7th for him to be re-assessed.

My health is finally on the improve. YAAAAAA me. I returned to swimming last Friday after a six week break due to cataract surgery and then bronchitis for three weeks. I still need to get the second eye done, having cancelled it once because of my father being rushed to hospital and a second time due to bronchitis. I now have to wait until February the 9th next year to get the second eye done. Just as well the right eye's cataract is not as bad as the left eye's cataract was, so the contrast between eyes is not that bad, still I frequently suffer tired eyes.

I lost my job due to constant time off with illness. Two weeks ago the boss asked me if I still wanted to work there. I told him I could not guarantee my attendance would improve. I asked him about getting a three month leave of absence, in the hope that my health would improve - I had a theory that my bad health run this year is due to an immune suppressant I have been taking for an underlying health condition - but he said no. Oh well, I enjoyed the job, but not the early starts as they left me, along with everything else going on in my life, feeling perpetually tired.

I went and saw my specialist a few days later and he agreed that the immune suppressant (Imuran) was probably slowing my bodies healing, so we agreed that I should stop taking them.

My bronchitis finally faded away last week and I restarted editing chapter nine of Stalking Tigers. It probably wouldn't have been a good idea to be editing the story in the previous weeks as the main character would probably have taken on a lot of my feelings of helplessness.

I am hopeful the removal of the drug will lead to a much healthier 2010, and much more writing/editing/critiquing/reading.

Merry Christmas to those who believe, otherwise don't let consumerism consume you.