Sunday, March 12, 2006

The Last Free Weekend

This has been my last free weekend for the foreseeable future, so I've tried to use it to both relax and try to get my house in order. On my last Saturday in which I won't be rushing out the door to get somewhere, I had a big, leisurely breakfast. I made scones, and since I had a bit of cream left over, I even made my own butter to put on them. I cheated and used the food processor instead of shaking a jar for half an hour like we did in kindergarten when we were learning about pioneer life. Now I'm afraid I'm going to have to make some bread so I can use the rest of the butter.

Then last night I went out to dinner with friends. I could make myself sound like a glamorous chick lit author if I said that one of my friends was a TV star, but I should probably confess that he was featured in a History Channel documentary about Iwo Jima, talking about his experiences there (he was on his way down the mountain when he passed the photographer who shot the famous photo on his way up). And we weren't exactly eating fancy cuisine and sipping cosmos. We were having barbecue, and the conversation covered topics like war stories, growing up in this area in the 1930s and 40s and rattlesnake roundups. In that group, I tend to just sit and listen.

Otherwise, I've spent the weekend sorting through my old magazines. I've been terribly lax at getting rid of magazines when they're outdated, so it's been kind of like time travel to flip through them to see if there are any articles I want to save. My life has changed so much in the past couple of years, and re-reading the magazines from back then has been a big reminder of that. I've almost emptied the magazine rack table in my living room and the magazine bins in my office. The hardest to let go have been all the travel magazines I got when I got free subscriptions to use up my Delta frequent flier miles. I finally forced myself to admit that I probably never was going to visit the kinds of places in those magazines, the information has probably changed since then, and if I am going to travel, I can get all the info on the Internet. The house actually looks messier than when I started cleaning, but that's because I had to take out so many things to sort through before I could start putting things away again. A future big sorting task will be to go through all those recipes I've filed to determine if I'm ever going to try any of them.

Now back to the painfully slow sorting process. I keep telling myself that if I ever get things organized so that it's easy to put things away in a way that I can ever find them again, it will be easier to keep the place reasonably clean. The last time I was able to do that was soon after I lost the day job when I used cleaning as an excuse for procrastinating with my writing.

As for the scary upcoming schedule:
Next Saturday I'm speaking to the North Texas RWA chapter
The following weekend will be wild, with the author dinner for the Plano Book Festival on Friday night, the Dallas Area Romance Authors meeting Saturday morning, and then I'm speaking at the Plano Book Festival and signing books that afternoon (then seeing Phantom of the Opera that night, but that's not work-related).
The weekend after that, my agent is coming into town on Friday afternoon, I've got a group booksigning that night, then I'm speaking at a conference on Saturday.
The following Thursday I'm taping a show on Dallas Community Television, then on Friday I have an authors reception for the Best Southwest Bookfair, and then I'm speaking at the Bookfair the next day.
I have Easter weekend off from work stuff, but I'll be plenty busy since I sing in the church choir.
Then the next weekend I have a meeting, and after that the book comes out and the fun really begins.

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