Another random thoughts post…
The dishwasher finally broke. It had been struggling for a while, and now has ceased to get the dishes clean. Doing dishes by hand has reminded me of how utterly awesome dishwashers are. I dislike emptying the dishwasher, but I don’t like washing dishes by hand for a family of five either (and I’m not even doing all of them). Fortunately, the new dishwasher gets installed on Friday.
I hit NaNoWriMo 17k words yesterday. I wrote 1000 of those words in the final 30 minutes of my workday (5-5:30), and that was a distracted 30 minutes in which I checked email twice. This no editor-thing is revealing, if nothing else, how fast I type.
Simultaneously to writing my NaNoWriMo garbage, I’ve been going through my last round of edits on The Cortlandt Boys (the novel that will be published as an ebook in the next few weeks). Close to publication, this novel is reasonably polished. So it’s good to remember that at one point, big chunks of it were much like the NaNoWriMo nonsense. There’s a lot to be said for the editing process.
A review I wrote of a new book of essays called The Seven Deadly Virtues ran in the Wall Street Journal yesterday. If you’re a subscriber, that link will take you there. If not, you can Google “Vanderkam” and “chastity” and “WSJ” and you should get the full text. I’m not sure how often that particular combination of words has been typed into Google before!
I’m also at Fast Company writing about 10 Habits That Make Everyone Hate You On Social Media. It’s at just shy of 4k shares now. It turns out that lists about mistakes share well, especially if they’re about social media. I also wrote a piece on 7 Time Management Lessons From People Who Write A Novel In A Month. I like this latter piece better, but it has been shared about 98 percent fewer times. This is the dilemma of writing online.
I read in the Wall Street Journal yesterday that retailers have found that Elsa dolls and dresses (from Frozen) sell at a 2-to-1 clip over Anna dolls/dresses/paraphernalia. Since Anna is the heroine who saves the day, I’m not sure what this says about us. Blond and sparkly beats spunk? I was heartened to learn that the Disney executives honestly thought the ratio would be 1-to-1 and were caught off guard.
My 7-year-old was off school on Tuesday. He tagged along with me to vote. I hope my explanation of why I bothered to go vote for candidates who were definitely going to lose was reasonably upbeat and responsible.
I’m doing somewhat better on playdate scheduling. I’m an introvert who’s awkward about her own social life, so managing 3 other people’s social lives is not exactly a strong suit. On the other hand, one of the upsides of having multiple siblings who are very close in age is that life is a constant playdate. So I’m trying to cut myself some slack on this front.
Real Simple sent out an email blast yesterday on “8 Cleaning Mistakes You’re Probably Making.” I get it (see above about how lists of mistakes click really well). But I don’t think that fretting about the direction in which one loads utensils into a dishwasher will make life real simple. We are drifting into Martha Stewart territory here, not life simplification. (What would make my life simpler? Having a functioning dishwasher; see point 1, above).