Wednesday, June 1, 2016

After June 1st

June 1st and we made it.  Our rent is paid.  Still, we'd talked about it all around and we're packing it in.  Literally packing.  We've decided that, come what may, employment or not, we're going to close the apartment and move in with my daughter.

Things are just coming apart.  Living month after month in a cloud of uncertainty has been making it harder and harder to maintain a sense of composure.  There have been some fights, though not many; mostly it is just a long struggle with ennui and flat out depression.  So, unlike a D&D character fighting a dragon, we're going to retreat.

We began putting stuff in boxes today.  My daughter is remaking her space so that there is space for us.  The mood around here has improved a little - but as we have been living in this space for more than seven years now, sentimentality is an issue.  I am sure there will be many tearful days coming up, many days of our sitting around and discussing things that we're going to miss.  Yet even in this there is hope.  If we can get some time to get on our feet emotionally, maybe we can figure out a way to apply ourselves once again to the problem of finding real work.

The painful reality is that, inevitably, after so many failed job interviews, so many expectations that don't pan out or turn out to be screwed over by employers who don't pay the wages that are owed or breaking a finger and getting fucked again in a whole different way, only to learn that I'm just too fucking tired to live up to the expectations of a third restaurant job, it's clear that the mental damage has been stacked out of control.

Hell, the biggest issue with my book right now isn't knowing what to write or the quality of the writing, but the goddamn crippling motivation to write.  I work on it every day and I make headway every day - but a thousand words a day of writing and rewriting isn't fast enough.  I need three times that and it's not coming.  I made only 30,000 words forward in May.

Okay, so, June.  If I can do that again this month, I'll have the book finished; but it will still be time after that to polish the language and have the editor go through it.  So now it is looking like the Fifth Man that should have been finished this week is looking at some time in July.  Goddamn it.

My apologies to those who have supported me.  Please forgive me as I make you wait for the resolution to that cliff hanger just a little longer.

That's all for now.  I'm bound to be in better shape once the Rubicon is full and clearly crossed and my mind stops worrying, for this month at least.  If I can get everything else off the table, teach some classes, stop harping about money on the blog and just write . . . I'll be fine.


Maxwell Joslyn said...

I hope things turn around for you very soon, Alexis.

I can't donate any more money at the moment, but I'm willing to do editing work on The Fifth Man, if you want another set of eyes.

Alexis Smolensk said...

It's okay, Maxwell. Everyone has given me a tremendous shot to get this year organized and to pull out of this mess. I have had at least been given time to produce most of the book and to organize ourselves as best we can, so that we're not skedaddling from our situation in chaos and confusion. We can go, as it were, like ladies and gentlemen. That is a blessing.

I will take your offer of another set of eyes under advisement. I feel I can certainly get a lot out of that. But would you be willing to accept a section of the book that would not put the book's whole content on line as a PDF? For example, chapters 18-22, without your being able to see what happens with chapters 13-17 until getting the actual book?

JB said...

@ Alexis:

I am very sorry to hear this news, man. Really. I can only imagine the stress of it all.

Still hopeful things turn around for you soon.

Alexis Smolensk said...

JB, given that you, along with many others, saved my ass on a number of occasions this spring, I feel most ashamed about this with regards to you and everyone. Shame is the worst part of this, much worse than stress. But I need to keep producing and being valuable at this point . . . or else I have nothing.

Scarbrow said...

Relax, Alexis. Take your time. You'll make it worse for yourself if you don't allow yourself to break. This situation is hard, we all understand. Same as with the delay of the book (absolutely understandable). But now it's time, for once, to let the defeat rescue you. Once you've fought and lost, and specially since you fought your hardest, there is no shame in retreating and regrouping. Sound tactical advice for D&D that can be extended to real life. Don't worsen it by beating up yourself. In due time, you will recover. Let time do its work.

Alexis Smolensk said...

Thank you Scarbrow,

It's the kind of thing I know in my head but not in my heart.