Time, sleep, kittens from above

Frustrated. Time, energy, ability, focus, all frustrated. Sleep 4 hours here, 10 hours there, never know how long I’ll be awake or how soon I’ll be able to wake, when I sleep. Weeks, now.  Trouble getting ‘work’ done – podcasting on time, painting anything new, putting together videos, writing… Even thinking well, clearly, coming to anything.

Right now, as I write this, I’m having trouble sitting here watching a movie.  That’s why I have the computer in front of me; sitting still for a movie wasn’t working.  It isn’t a bad movie.  My mind and body are simply … unable to focus.

Semi-nocturnal, lately, which has been causing problems, so Thursday night I went to bed at 10PM.  Of course, I couldn’t sleep past 2:30AM, though I tried staying in bed another hour after.  Got some stuff done in the late morning, but crashed for a long nap in the afternoon.  Got up in time to finish the podcast before Mandy took me to the Sweet 16 party (formal dress) of the daughter of one of the teachers she works with.  Couldn’t really get to sleep right when we got home.

Friday night around 2AM, as I was meaning to go to bed, I heard this noise coming from the ceiling.  Like something moving around up there.  I’d heard it before, but … this time is seemed to be accompanied by mewling.  The sound of kittens.  I resolved to peek my head into a nearby hole & see if I could see what it was, and after a bit of difficulty I managed to see that a cat had apparently had a litter of 5 kittens in my ceiling.  For a couple of hours I thought about and tried to see if I could get them out through the existing hole, but that didn’t work out.  Not getting into any details here, but if I could have done so without alerting Mandy/Rachel to it (they have a soft spot for cute things), I would have destroyed & disposed of the lot of them in the middle of the night.  I went to bed with morning light coming through the windows.  Slept until early afternoon.

Got up, checked with my dad (whose house I live in), broke a hole through the wall and extracted the kittens.  Photos here.  Found the opening where the adult cat had got in originally and sealed it up, so she couldn’t get back in and cause problems.  Guessed the kittens were 2-3 weeks old.  Bought some cat milk.  Spent the next eighteen hours or so trying to get them to eat any of it.  I guess kittens that age are supposed to be eating every couple of hours.  In between hours-long fighting to get them to eat much at all (save the very eager one that gladly ate every time I offered) we tried to find them homes – asked our friends & family and everyone on twitter, Mandy blogged about it, called all the no-kill shelters she could find online (they’re all full up), and around 9AM Sunday morning I finally passed out, intending to get up again in a couple hours to try to feed them again.  Thankfully, Mandy took care of feeding them the next couple of times so I could get some sleep.  I got up in time to take them down to the Arizona Humane Society this afternoon, where I was told that since they don’t have a bottle feeding program, unless the kittens immediately started eating solid food, they’d be immediately euthanized, and would I like to keep them for a week and try to get them on solid food, myself?  No.  I just don’t want cats living in my ceiling.  It was near closing time, and the entire staff of half a dozen women and young women -all quite susceptible to cute- immediately protested their euthanasia and got to work trying to convince them to eat solid food.  A bit of quick paperwork, and we were out of there.

I’ll probably be up again all night tonight, at this rate.  Maybe I’ll go down to Super WalMart and return the other container cat milk I didn’t end up opening.  Should probably wait for tomorrow when I can stop by the Sam’s Club, too, to pick up the 5lb bag of shredded cheese that’s on our grocery list.  Maybe I’ll try to sleep, or play a game of CIV:Rev.  Maybe I’ll try to write a few thousand more words toward my book on being a MicroPublisher. Maybe I’ll just bumble around, frustrated & unfocused until I pass out.

Blog tinkering, late nights

I seem to have stayed up all night tonight. Bought a new video game (used at Zia for $22, vs. the original retail price of $60 = win), Civilization:Revolution for my PS3, and played it for 5+hrs, not finishing up until 4AM. Would have played a little longer, but this version of Civ doesn’t allow for the “..just one more turn” option after you win; you just have to stop playing when you win.

Blinked a couple of times, looked around, thought about heading to bed. Really, tried to decide between trying to stay up (ie: all day) and going to bed (and then trying to get up at a reasonable hour). Part of this is related to not getting out of bed until Noon on Monday. Now it’s after 5AM on Tuesday, and my typing is bad enough that … probably I oughtn’t to try to stay awake if my intention is to accomplish anything worthwhile. But I paused at a computer for a moment, and couldn’t help but do a little of this, a little of that.

So, I updated the “via Podcast” page for Lost and Not Found, added a via Podcast page for Forget What You Can’t Remember, and added an “eBook edition” page for FWYCR explaining that the eBook should be available in February (& I wouldn’t mind help getting it ready by then).

Then I came over here, to lessthanthis.com, and poked around a bit at the new Tweetbacks plugin I’ve got installed. It’s still not got the dates right, but at least that’s not my fault. It is separating everything out and labeling and displaying things appropriately, for now. Didn’t realize the version I was using wasn’t the original, or that since I dropped it in here half-working the first guy had gone ahead and written an entire TweetSuite – I’ll have to think about putting that in, too. I’m pretty happy with what it’s doing right now, though, so … until I feel like tinkering again…

Getting easier, getting better

Podcasting is getting easier, the more I do it. I’m either getting more confident, or more sloppy, the more hours of audio I record and put online. Today I put together this week’s episode faster than ever, partially because there was less editing required. The mid-week episode wasn’t so bad, either, and for a similar reason. That, I think, has something to do with another thing I think I’m getting better at: writing.

It isn’t necessarily going faster, or easier, during the actual writing. But especially as I’ve been deep in the midst of writing a spinoff novel to Lost and Not Found and my immediate flow into a spinoff of that while recording the audio version of Lost and Not Found, I’ve been able to see how my writing has changed. Or, at the least, to see how much my writing could be improved from what was in Lost and Not Found. Hopefully by seeing that I’m able to steer away from it in my new writing. Even just little things like maintaining tense consistently, or using the same version of a word throughout a book (ie: either the British or the American version, but not switching back and forth between the two), which I thought I’d corrected in the Second Edition of Lost and Not Found, are very frustrating. I don’t know how much time I want to keep sinking into that book, but it isn’t up to my current standards.

I’m writing something very strange, right now. I’m not sure anyone will understand it. I’m not sure what to do with it, this collection of stories. The strangeness, the expected failure to understand, are iterative. I see them in individual sentences & paragraphs, in each story, and in the collection as a whole. I’m not sure it’ll be book length when it’s complete. Maybe, but book length feels very far away, right now, and my list of stories yet to be written for it feels like it’s dwindling. Perhaps I will write a series of stories even further removed from Forget What You Can’t Remember, which are spinoffs of these spinoff stories and which show the stories of characters who are incidental to the stories of the incidental characters in that novel. I already have one in mind, actually. If it’s just the one, I’ll pretend it’s relevant. If I can come up with more, perhaps I’ll divide More Lost Memories into chunks.

I discovered in the last few days that NaNoWriMo doesn’t really matter to me, any more. Not in a giving up way, not in an apathetic way, but in the following way: This is my job. It doesn’t matter whether I hit your word count goal, as long as I reach a length that I, as the publisher, feel is ‘book length’. It doesn’t matter whether I hit your time goal, because if I finish early then great, get to work on writing the next thing sooner and if I don’t finish on time I still have to keep writing. This is my job. This is what I do. I write. I make publishing decisions. When one book is done, I work on another (I’ve got at least four books either partially written or entirely written and partially edited right now, with at least a couple more ready to be worked on, and an endless supply of imagination) and when that’s done this will still be my job. So it doesn’t matter. Not practically. Although: we did buy Little Big Planet as NaNo-bait, and we aren’t allowed to open it until both Mandy and I finish our books. So, there’s that.

Alright. It’s 5AM. This isn’t an early post, it’s a late one. Been up all night. Barely written anything. Even more fun, I need to be up on Saturday, during the day, for North Valley Art Walk, followed by an Iron-Chef-type battle (Pumpkin), followed by the NaNoWriMo all-nighter, followed by church, then probably the Scottsdale Art Fair, and then my Nephews’ birthday party. No, seriously, if I don’t get to bed on time tomorrow night I’ll be running from early Saturday morning until late Sunday evening on almost no sleep at all. Because my life is awesome. Time for bed. Whenever it is I get up, I’ll record an intro for the Modern Evil Podcast, mix the episode, and get it online, ASAP. I’m going to aim for …9AM? Someone call me at 9AM.