Sunday, April 10, 2011

better late than never

Here are some things I need to do next week: make a dentist appointment, file my tax return, learn how to use my new publicity software program and resume searching for an agent.

These are going to involve respectively: pain, humiliation, frustration, the forking over of hard-earned cash (welcome to freelancing!) and good old-fashioned existential angst. These things all become bigger and more frightening the longer I put them off. I am a slave to deadlines, I won't miss them but I will absolutely put things off if there is enough time to do so.

I took a break from agent hunting after a slew of dispiriting rejections that culminated with one in which a big agent told me I had a good voice and was talented but that it was just too hard to sell anything in women's fiction right now if it didn't have a magical or supernatural element. After I briefly considered turning one of the main characters into a warlock, I knew it was time to take a little breather. As for taxes and the dentist, no explanation of why I fear these is probably necessary but it's occurred to me that H & R Block employees and dental hygienists have both perfected that look and tone of voice that conveys in a mere instant 'of all the people who come in here, you are by far the most disappointing. You are hardly even worthy of teeth/ 10-99s'. As for the publicity software, I consider it a great irony that one of my new gigs is technical writing as I would rather read the Koran backwards than read an instruction manual. I have a deep fear both the boredom and frustration contained in that tiny type.

What do you put off until the last minute?

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