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I'm a writer and library worker who wears many hats. I believe a good book and a good piece of chocolate are the keys to a happy life.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Piffle on Patience

If you know anything about me, you probably realize that I’m scatterbrained and more than a little distracted. Sometimes this is a blessing, sometimes it’s a frustration. One of the areas where the water gets a little muddy is patience.

Oh, I don’t mind things like waiting in line, or waiting for the bills to show up, or even waiting in many other things. See, I’m easily distracted, so I forget how long I’ve been waiting. But unfortunately when my brain catches a hold of something it considers very important, it suddenly becomes very focused and impatient. It probably assumes that if it doesn’t keep reminding me every minute of the day I’d forget about what I’m waiting for all together. Sometimes that wouldn’t be such a bad thing.

So, here’s my problem. I’m being very impatient right now and it’s driving me (and my brain) crazy.

I’m waiting to hear back from the publisher about my latest manuscript. It’s been longer than their stated response time, but not long enough to be completely lost in the paperwork shuffle. I’m a big chicken. I figure when I look at the time frame from their point of view there’s nothing to worry about. From mine, well…. If I dare to ask what’s up with it, I’m afraid they’ll say, “Oh, you didn’t get that email? We told you we couldn’t publish it months ago!” Or worse, “What manuscript?” So I keep waiting, biting my nails to the quick and showing my OCD side by checking my email constantly and recounting the weeks to make sure I didn’t make some gross error in my time calculations.

Multiply that by the anxiety I’m beginning to feel about my next project. I have a book to write for next year’s Primary curriculum and I still have no outline! I have a small window of time from getting the official theme into my hands to sending back out a finished manuscript. That window is swiftly becoming teeny tiny. The materials for 2009 are very late this year, my publishers are getting antsy and adding an additional measure of nervous jiggle to my leg as I surf the net and check with everyone I’ve got scouting for its arrival, yet again. This behavior usually occurs after about every seventh unsuccessful email check.

So today I say: piffle on patience. Whoever said it was a virtue must be shot! (Wait… that wasn’t part of the beatitudes was it?) Obviously there is some sick and twisted humor behind this concept. It’s just great if you happen to live as a hermit on top of some mountain somewhere. What would you be waiting for, anyway? But some of the rest of us have gone from grey to blue to purple to ready-to-pass-out from holding our breath and waiting to find out which anticipated bomb is going to drop in our lives next.

I think I need oxygen.
I think I need migraine medication and a strong sedative.
I think I should be losing weight from all this stress.
I think I need some answers all ready!

Let me say again. Piffle on patience.

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