I've been in a slightly weird state since I got back home. I don't know exactly why. Was it the return to all the old and varied stomping grounds? the 9 solid days of being with other people? the fact that I no longer have any immediate plans to get out of town? I'm not sure.
Here are the symptoms. 1) I'm tired. Exhausted. Yesterday I quite literally did nothing (except go swimming) until 5 pm, and even then all I did was go to the grocery store. I can't even account for the passage of time. And then this morning I'm still tired. Eventually I need to get back to work, I suppose, but it's hard when my head feels like it's about to roll off onto the desk. 2) A bit of moodiness and irritability, like the things that seemed really great a few weeks ago have all kind of lost their luster. I hope that this is just connected to the weariness and/or is a feature of my recovering from too much socializing, because it's not great.
It's possible, too, that I haven't entirely worked out all of the issues that I thought I'd worked out in the spring, and perhaps there are some leftover stresses, some things with which I still need to fully make my peace. I don't mean to be cryptic here, but I don't particularly want to be any more specific than that, either.
In any event, it is my hope--nay, conviction--that getting back into my usual routine and back to work will shape me up.
In that vein, let's move on to brighter topics:
* I have a $100 gift certificate to Amazon (courtesy of my credit card rewards system--I've been hoarding them for years, I kid you not) and have not yet decided how to spend it. A part of me wants to be totally frivolous and buy something like the complete Buffy series (which is more than $100, I'm quite certain), but perhaps there are better uses for my money. Like some nice work-related books that I need. Or a whole packet of novels. I don't know! And here's what's going to happen: The gift certificate will become so fetishized and precious that I'll never be able to bring myself to use it, and will actually spend money at Amazon for future purchases just so that I can keep the coupon. In order to prevent that from happening, I'm willing to take suggestions.
* I've received several very polite rejection letters in response to my manuscript proposals. A rejection letter is not normally a bright topic, of course, but I'm impressed by just how very polite and nice these rejection letters are (to paraphrase: "Dear Professor Mihi, Thank you for your very interesting proposal, it looks wonderful, just not right for us right now, etc etc'"). I've sent out loads of short stories and a handful of agent queries for novels over the years, and the rejection letters are not so nice ("Author: We received your submission and whatever tripe you've written, it's clearly not for us. Next time you might actually look at our journal before inundating us with your garbage; that way you'll know just how sub-par it really is."). So, even though I'm reasonably certain that I'm still receiving form letters (with my name and MS title plugged in), the tone of the letters is helping to preserve my optimism. Also, I've so far only sent my proposal to really absurdly top-tier publishing houses, so I can't get too discouraged yet.
Best of all:
I have a new favorite word: Trashcousin!
On my travels, I met a child (she turned four this week) who called everyone "trashcousin." The term apparently denotes some favor, or at least affectionate familiarity--as in, "Hey, trashcousins! What's happening?" It has something to do with Oscar the Grouch, but a Google search on the word yielded nothing, so I can only assume that it's her own creation. In any event I am now determined to get this into at least local circulation, as it seems like a word worth preserving. So, trashcousins! It's time I shake off this lethargy, maybe put on my glasses (contacts are too much work this morning; besides, I'm still in my pajamas), and read that chapter that's been idling on my computer lo these many weeks. Thanks for reading, trashcousins!