I wonder if feeling so tired and drained and strung out by stress is due to getting older or if I would have felt this way if I'd done a book tour at 22. I feel like I used to be able to stay up for 24 hours with no problem, and now I feel wrecked, having done it yesterday. I need a full day (probably more) to recover, and not look at the big black elephant of the launch in the room. Would it help to try to eat better? (I ate excerably yesterday, as I was at Wicked Faire and the available food was all fried.) If I made sure to get vitamins and fiber and all, would I feel less destroyed by everything? I didn't even drink last night.
Ok, that's not true. In a shocking example of win, two separate fans brought me drinks when I was looking peaked. A beer and a homemade cocktail, for the record. But that's not half enough to affect me at all. Also it's really nice to have your peakedness--and pretty books!--noticed when you're sitting next to Terrance Zdunich and his mad singing fans all day.
I think I alienated the entire steampunk contingent at the "panel," which I was supposed to moderate, but since no other panelists showed up, I had to give a talk on steampunk and it turns out that people don't really want to think critically about it in any fashion so like 5 people thought it was awesome and the rest shot me gear-spangled dagger-eyes. I like steampunk, guys. I do this to everything I love. Let's talk about fantasy literature sometime, you'll get an earful.
I was on the Hour of the Wolf yesterday, before I went to Wicked Faire (resulting in 24 hour upness). While walking there, we came upon Ground Zero, unexpectedly, since we don't know NYC at all. It was silent and dark because no one is in that part of town at 4 am, and strange and eerie. I was in California. I saw it on television. No matter how the news tried to make it feel like it was something that happened to all of us, equally, simultaneously, I never felt that way, and always thought the exhortations to extreme, constant, long-term grief for something that didn't even affect anyone I knew at the time, beyond politically, was obscene. Shouldn't it matter more to people who were nearby, who lost loved ones? No, we should all tear our hair, we are all the same, and we should therefore turn our grief on the world. I know that's not really a popular opinion. But my universe didn't sunder on 9/11, and pretending that it did seems to me to be pantomiming the genuine feelings of others.A pantomime enforced by an entire culture. I can't even imagine what it must have been like to be there on that day, to even be near, how terrifying and awful. And then there's that dark empty space, something I can see, and smell and hear, and it's as though nothing and everything happened. There is still nothing built there, it's just a mark in time.
Marks in time draw me because I often feel lost in unmarked time. All actions are reversible in theory but not in practice. I think they draw everyone. Once there was something. Once there was someone. Now there isn't.
I wonder how, in self-help parlance, authentically and powerfully I am living my life. Given that it's a finite resource.
I have found knitting to be an extraordinary boon for my often troubled and disordered mind. When writing isn't working and I'm afraid of the next few months and my whole body feels broken and old and aching and I don't know where to find comfort in humans, or how to ask for it, knitting seems to smooth me over and make space for writing to come again. It's rhythmic and zen. It's homey, though no woman or man in my family has ever done it in my presence. It cools the brain the way Tetris does. It's a puzzle. Make the pieces fit. Take pleasure in the perfect row. Repeat. I apologize for every bad thing I said about it. I am almost certainly going to be one of those girls with a bag of yarn on her at all times.
I cannot deal with the world today. Yet I crave e-contact. And justbeast. These are psychic comfort foods. I spent all my extrovert points yesterday at the con and I've got nothing right now. I don't know where that came from either, if it's age, or some kind of introvert growth on my spine or something. Or lingering Japan effects, which spring up when I least expect them. But then, when I was younger, I never had to consort with the sheer number of people I do now, so maybe I've always been this way, just with a really high limit on social activity that I've only started knocking against now.
Tomorrow, I think, I could see people, if people wanted to be seen.