I’m sitting here listening to Eddie Cochran sing his 1958 hit SUMMERTIME BLUES Paul’s video jukebox (http://www.1959bhsmustangs.com/VideoJukebox.htm#) on my PC and when I hear the lyric “You can’t have the car because you didn’t work a lick” I realize that I haven’t written a lick since May! (I still get the car though, one of the benies of making the payments.) I pledge to give myself a swift kick in the keester and then put that off (are you like me in summer–able to procrastinate about procrastinating. Yeah, I can put off putting things off.)
I have to be fair with myself we all know Maine summers are short (especially up here in THE COUNTY where we have nine months of winter and three months to get ready for it). and I live in a house built in 1900, which means there’s always something needing fixin’. This summer I’ve only had three things on my plate: (1) a farmer porch runs along two walls of my house and over the years the outside has settled, pulling it away from the house (it sure makes a good rain interesting . . . watching the water pour–not drip–through the wainscotting), (2) a section of roof over the bathroom (Inside, thank God–yes, believe it or not indoor plumbing has come to Aroostook County!) needs repailacement. Then there’s (3) replacing the shelter that collapsed last winter. Include the temptation to put the boat in the water and go fishing (which I been successful in doing) and taking those day-long ATV rides through the abundant forests (which based upon the amount of logging I’ve seen aren’t really abundant anymore. By the way mystery writers and fans did you catch the clue in this statement? Yeah, I haven’t succeeded putting off my ATV rides.)
Then there are the usual maintenance chores like cutting the grass (which in early summer is a twice-a-week job, not to mention that the house sits on .85 of an acre) which can take anywhere from 3 to 4 hours, depending on how fussy I get.
We mustn’t forget sitting on the porch performing my self-appointed job as neighborhood watch, watching the aforementioned grass grow, and watching the hummingbirds. It’s no wonder I don’t get much written done.
Did I mention that my publisher seems to like to release my books in the summer. In summer I attend Thursdays on Sweden in Caribou(I blogged about this last year) and appearances at the Caribou and Presque Isle libraries (average attendance two, the librarianand one other. However TOS has been a success. There are no major book sellers north of Bangor and only one smaller store that sells new books (everything else is a used book store–which I enjoy perusing, but it’s tough to sell new books when there could be copies of some of yours on the shelf for a dollar or two.)
I’ve considered putting in a vegetable garden, but have no idea which of the above listed activities I’d be willing to give up. Then there’s the fact that I’ve never in my life gardened and haven’t a single clue how to do it. So, in closing, what do you use to keep from writing in the summer? Maybe in a couple of months I’ll do a blog on why it’s so darned hard for me to write in autumn!