I’ve kept to my self-inflicted curfew for a week now, and barring that first night, when I missed it by fifteen minutes, I’ve either gone to bed at 10:30 or even before.
The effects of an extra measly half-hour or hour of sleep are interesting. Showering with my eyes open is a novel experience—I haven’t mistaken anything for the shampoo since last Wednesday. It’s also easier to put in my contacts for some reason.
Despite my worries that I would be decreasing my already questionable productive writing time, I’ve managed to do some solid work on what appears to have been chosen by my subconscious as my Next Non-Pigeon Drop Project, though it’s early days, yet, so who knows. I have a sheaf of possibilities—not to mention the Nano novelettes—and it’s proving slightly difficult to step off the paths that have been worn into my imagination.
And to be honest, I’m a little leery of dropping (pun not intended) the Pigeon mindset—I’m not sure I should let it entirely go until it find a home and edits are finally final. But I am starting to pry my mental fingers from it, very gently, one by one.
And I’ve stopped carrying around the Big Pink flash drive which has been my constant companion for over a year and contains all my Pigeon drafts, notes, character charts, outlines, synopses, queries, etc., plus a few other things as well.
It’s an odd feeling—weirder than waking up before breakfast.
It feels a bit like forgetting to put my wedding ring on after I make biscuits–though instead of looking at my bare finger and gasping in shock, I slap my front right pocket and my heart hits my large colon with a panicked bang.
I made regular file back-ups—I learned that lesson the hard way, with a couple of heartbreaking refreshers—but there was an emotional investment in having my book with me wherever I went, even if I knew I wouldn’t be anywhere near a computer. A constant reminder and focus.
But it’s time to step back a bit. It’s not just that I need time and separation from Pigeon right now so I can send it out into the world without hyperventilating,* it’s that my laptop is having trouble reading Big Pink and I’ve decided it needs a rest from riding around all day in a warm pocket and being dragged out and jammed into strange USB ports and I just realized that I sound like a cyberpimp for a CGIgolo or something, which is certainly not my intention.
It is also not my intention to lose anything on that flash drive, so after a particularly frustrating five minutes the other night,** I gave Big Pink its own folder on my desktop and whisked it away to the Small Drawer of Retired Flash Drives, where it will share war stories with the former agent known only as “F:”,*** which also has a memorial desktop folder.
My organizational system defies logic, which I like to see as just another layer of security.
Regardless, I appear to be moving on—and on a bit more sleep than usual. We’ll see how it goes.
Think it’s too soon to adopt another flash drive?
How do you move on from major projects?
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*Which doesn’t bode well for the first couple weeks of Jane and Sunny’s college careers.
**During which I may or may not have screamed at my laptop, “What do you mean you can’t detect it? It’s right here and bright stinkin’ pink!!” and Sunny may or may not have pointed helpfully to my laptop lid and said, “Hold it up to the camera eye, Mommy, right there.”
***So named after its original designation on my first laptop. I am a simple people.