Since my birthday is this Friday, this is going to be a short work week for me. I’m taking Thursday and Friday off. I’ve realized that I need to recharge a bit, to refill the well, so to speak. I’ve been working pretty intensely for most of the year, in some unusual and difficult circumstances, and I feel a bit drained and tired. Last Sunday, I made an effort not to think about work for the whole day, and it was amazing the difference it made. I hadn’t realized just how much it was consuming me. Even when I’m not actively writing, my brain is constantly spinning, thinking about stories, business plans, publicity I should be doing, how much money I’m making (or not making), etc. I need to spend a few days not thinking about that stuff.
Instead, I need to do other creative things. The plan is to spend the next few days reading, watching movies, maybe doing some sewing or embroidery, possibly some coloring or painting, some music, etc. Stuff that’s not writing or thinking about writing, business, etc. Even the stuff I’ve been watching for the past few months has been somewhat work-related.
I knew it was getting bad when last night I dreamed about new covers for the Enchanted, Inc. books. I’ve been doing a lot of research on book cover design lately, trying to figure out where the things I’ve been writing fit, and although I love the look of my books, they’re pretty dated right now. They’re back in 2005 and don’t really say “contemporary fantasy” in today’s design language. I think my rewatching The Office on DVD also had an influence there, as the covers in my mind were pretty much like the menu screen on the DVDs, showing a desk with various office items on it, but with some additional magical stuff, like a crystal ball and a book about spells, on the desk.
Unfortunately, the publisher still controls the first four books in the US, so even if I changed covers for the ones I control, it wouldn’t affect the first book, the one that brings in new readers, unless maybe I could persuade the publisher to change at least the e-book covers.
That’s the kind of constant brain spinning I need to get away from for a few days.
First, though, I’m close to finishing this draft. I’m going to get that done today, then take care of my usual weekend housework chores this afternoon, and then I get to relax for a few days. I don’t have big plans for the birthday, thanks to social distancing and living in a hotspot area. I’m going to run to the grocery store tomorrow, and I think I’m going to get some kind of cake and maybe figure out a present to buy myself. I’m less than thrilled with the toaster oven I bought a few weeks ago—it’s smaller than the one I was replacing—so I’m thinking about maybe getting a bigger one. I use the toaster oven for most of my summer cooking, and I can barely fit a potato in this one without it getting too close to the coils. Yes, I have an exciting life.