East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

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I won’t be a lockdown writer

The bread machine is working just fine, and we’re keeping it going – there’s nothing better than freshly baked bread after so many weeks of dry biscuits and crackers. And yes, as my brother keeps repeating, we should have bought this baby two years ago. So, everything seems to be fine.

And while the bread machine is churning our Sunday loaf, I spent some time browsing my social – try to understand why Amazon thinks I’m French and keeps suggesting books in French, and why Facebook only notifies me posts in Portuguese and Tamil, and ads for 5000-bucks-a-night hotels.

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Useful lessons, and where to find them

Yesterday I posted an article for my Patrons, in which I tangentially compared this writing business to being an adventurer.
And I know, it’s a romantic notion, it’s me telling stories about myself to paint a veneer of glamour over the tight budget and the overdue bills, but that’s my story and I’m sticking to it: writing for a living is like setting off on a long journey to find the ancient ruins of the Lost City, or crossing an ocean on a sailing ship.

Having recently discovered the works of Alastair Humphreys, I’ve been reading Ten Lessons from the Road, a motivational handbook based on Humphreys experiences during his four years travelling around the world on a bicycle.

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Stationary traveler

Today I was totally sure it was Saturday.
That’s a bad sign – losing the perception of time when your life becomes a continuum of

Wake up
Sit at the PC and write
Prepare lunch
Sit at the PC and write
Prepare dinner
Sit at the PC and write
Go to sleep

Add to this increasing panic attacks as soon as my mind gets off the work at hand, and this month is really being hell.
And there’s this voice at the back of my head mocking me… *oh, so you wanted the life of the pulp writers of old, uh? Well, chump, I hope you’re enjoying the ride!”

Art by July Pluto

And indeed, one of the worst bits of all this is losing the enjoyment I usually got out of writing. It’s turning into a chore, and that’s bad.
Not only because writing pays the bills, but because writing to me always was fun.
So I decided I’ll take a vacation.
A short, cheap1 but much needed vacation – I booked a guided tour of the area where I live. We’ll be taking it the next weekend. Continue reading