Paperwork, insurance companies, and other trials

Yesterday wasn’t quite as productive for writing as I had hoped.

After the burrito breakfast, things went downhill a bit. I started doing some paperwork — paying bills, calling insurance companies for the ongoing requests and coverage issues following my father-in-law’s death earlier this year, figuring out our own health coverage and new doctors since Ben has to have a sports physical by the end of the week, figuring out who has to pay what by when, and staring blankly at paperwork for the probate court filing which our attorney said was so straightforward that we didn’t need him to do it for us. Joe and his sister inherited their father’s condo, but the bills, taxes, insurance, negotiation over repairs, renting it out all fall to us since his sister — well that’s a story for another day. And the story of his father’s homicide — that’s a story for another day as well.

At 3:00 yesterday afternoon, I finished paperwork and stood on the veranda to warm myself and breathe in the clear air. Between two and four in the afternoon has always been my favorite time of day. The way the light slants through the windows, the sound of insects in the grass and birds in the trees — it seems such a subdued, but somehow filled with hope, time of day. I sliced yellow tomatoes and cucumbers from our CSA and added sharp cheddar and pickles, this was my lunch.

With my remaining work hours I did reread that piece, and I tried to submit it to my first round of literary magazines only to be reminded that most reading periods begin in September. So I recorded the information on how and where to submit and their suggested word limits so that I will be ready to go next month. I learned that some of them are no longer accepting submissions until they get caught up on their existing submissions, and at least one is on indefinite hiatus from both submissions and new publications.

When Joe came home yesterday evening, he asked if it felt real yet since I had quit two full weeks ago. Yes, it does. I wear stretchy pants every day. I read, I write, and I’m not distracted by the need to clean (which is a shame, but the house is growing quite furry and the basement still needs to be squared away for renters). I find that I need reading glasses most of the time because this netbook is much smaller than the dual monitors at my old job. But no, it doesn’t feel quite real. True, I no longer worry at all about my team’s monthly metrics or office politics, but I feel dreamy and lost, in need of a hard project with an outline. I need to remember how to write, almost as if I should read all the craft books about writing fiction again.

So I’m curious what today will bring.


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