Saturday, April 24, 2010

Feline Diversions

This is my cat. His name is Slide. He's not like other "cats." He thinks he's a dog. He's personable and likes to be with people. While I'm working he's usually close by, contentedly watching, like he is here in this picture above. He's an indoor cat, much to his dismay, because every time he goes outside he gets beaten up. So, after an expensive trip to the vet and four days in the cone of shame (wish I had a picture of that) we decided to keep him indoors. He's generally okay with that, except now.

Here he is expressing his displeasure with the fact that it's beautiful outside. Spring has sprung! The sun is shinning, the birds are chirping, the squirrels are frolicking and he's stuck indoors! Trust me, it's hard to work with a cat looking at you like this - even when he's not sitting right in front of the computer monitor.

So how does any of this relate to writing?

It relates because I'm feeling just like Slide. Spring is distracting - especially after this winter. I'm working on revisions (I wasn't kidding in my comment to Robin's post when I said I'd been planning to post on Revisions), and it's hard. Really hard. And it's made even more difficult by the distractingly nice weather. People will probably want to take me out and tar and feather me, but I'm missing the cold, dark, snowy days of winter when all I wanted to do was stay inside and write and read.

So, I'm wondering how you manage to keep yourselves focused on writing, when it's so darned nice outside?!


  1. Wow, that picture made me laugh a lot! The look in Slide's eyes is pure hatred.

    I definitely have a harder time writing when it's nice out, but I've found two things that help me. If I do some fun outdoor stuff for part of the day, it's much easier to concentrate when I get back. I also bring my laptop outside sometimes - this can be a gamble because I might just stare at the birds for an hour, but in the end I wind up getting some work done. Good luck and happy spring!

  2. oh, look at the attitude! Hilarious!

  3. Anna - I've tried working out on my deck with my laptop, but I have two problems. 1) I end up staring at the birds for an hour and 2) Slide sits at the back door (which of course is all glass) and meows like he's Linda Blair in THE EXORCIST or he goes off and does something naughty to get back at me.

    TerryLynn - Oh, the attitude! My kids never gave me such attitude.

  4. Man, that is a cuss face if I ever saw one. That sour puss would be enough make me want to leave my work space and go outside too. Maybe you should keep Slide out of your office during the spring and summer months, so you can work, without worrying about getting clawed and bitten to death. Meow!

  5. What a look! I don't think I've ever seen a cat with a more expressive face.

  6. The picture of Slide is priceless "cat". What is he thinking ? Do you want to know?

    In good weather I don't mind working inside as long as I'm by a window looking out occsionally to get a glimpse of the bright day. And, I promise myself that I will get out there to take a walk and work in the garden.


  7. J.L. - You'd never know it from that second picture, but Slide is really THE sweetest cat in the world (and I'm not just saying that because he's mine).

    Bish - He certainly makes himself understood!

    Eileen - I do sit by a window which Slide and I gaze out together. And promising myself a jaunt outside does give me motivation.

  8. Great pictures! Made me laugh because my dog is wearing a "cone of shame" right now. Photo here: My husband calls me a sadist because I can't help laughing at him every now and then. Maybe so...

    I am terrible with distractions under any circumstances, spring or otherwise. I have to set deadlines for myself and then post them to the world on my blog to keep me honest about meeting them.

    And I agree - revisions are HARD

  9. Yes, I'm always anxious to get out there and garden when the weather is nice. I figure escaping to the garden is legit as long as I'm pondering a writing problem as I plant and weed.

    Mental multi-tasking works until garden decisions trump word decisions because planting choices are gratifyingly instant and seeable.

  10. That is one seriously funny picture!

    I do most of my revising scribbling all over a hard copy with a second pass as I input my changes. My favorite spot to do those hand revision is on the swing on my deck.

    Now back to my first draft -- it's a rainy, nasty day today. The sooner I finish this draft, the sooner I get to sit in my swing and revise!

  11. Oh, I miss the cold, dark snowy days of winter, too. Besides the freedom to hole up and write and read, I can wear pj pants all day. The other three seasons, I have to be more prepared to step outside, and we have neighbors. But in general I'm just not an outdoors person, and that's really all there is to how I cope.

  12. Julie - Your dog is adorable (even with the cone of shame). My cat wore a soft cone and I came home and found he'd somehow gotten it around his waist and he was wearing it like a tutu. Oh, and I work MUCH better with deadlines, too.

    Marcia, you and I must be soul sisters! I love to take walks, but only if the weather is a perfect 70 degrees with no humidity and certainly no chance of rain. I don't like to garden and I don't like the NJ Shore (I know, I'll now receive hate mail), but sitting out on my deck with a good book is my idea of heaven!

    Gale - I'm always jealous of your determined gardening. Wish I had it in me.

    Judy - Keep at that draft! You'll be in your swing before you know it.

  13. Okay, I'm more of a dog person, but Slide is a definite personality! Great photos! (I could easily anthropomorpize him!)

    I miss the winter too! I think I cling to whatever season has just past. (or is it passed, ugh) We've had beautiful weather here and as I mentioned in my last post - it's been hard NOT to be distracted. As long as I promise myself treats and take a break now and then (like lunch outside) I can usually hunker down and work.

  14. Your cat is just too adorable! I'm also in the middle of revisions. I'm 20 pages from finishing a second draft. We can do it!!!!!!

  15. Robin - Rewards are important. I tell myself if I work through the morning (I mean really work, not waste time doodling around pretending I'm working), then I can have the afternoon off. Thing is, if I really work through the morning I usually don't want the afternoon off!

    Christina - 20 pages away! You rock! I'm not even done with the first draft. But I needed to go back and "fix" the first 150 pages. But I've been focusing on the first 40 or so. It's a supernatural and the set up has to be right.