Yes, it’s been a while. Again. First I was working on a post that’s still sitting in my drafts folder because I couldn’t beat the words into sense, and then life. Blah blah, medical mayhem, lots of waiting rooms and doctor’s offices, suffice it to say I’m pretty sure any vision test I take from this point forward is null and void– I’ve seen so many while sitting with my girl, I’ve got every chart memorized. Thank you, my fellow Dems/Liberals for being diligent and insisting on being heard about how disastrous the proposed health care bill was, and thank you, GOP, for being in such a mess that you’ve had to put your we-want-you-to-suffer-painfully plans on hold so I can keep doing this.
And oh yes, I’m writing again. A secret unless you a) read this blog post or b) follow my twitter feed (which you should, because on the thrice annual occasion that I remember to log on, I retweet with the best of them). It might be more accurate to say I’m rewriting, because this isn’t a glittery new project, this is the rusty old wreck I tabled a few years back that I’ve already talked about reworking. I figure I *might* be able to use half of what was there, and overall I don’t yet know if I’m taking something that was meh and making it better, or taking something that was meh and puking weird and unidentifiable bits of acid all over it.
Takes a bit of magical thinking to write a novel, regardless of genre. More than a bit if you’re writing with an eye towards publication. If you’re looking at trade publishing (as in–not self-publishing) I’m pretty sure the odds are 843,000,000,000 to one. A couple of years back I blogged about the need for big brass ones in order to believe this could be done. Despite regular polishing of my metaphorical testicles, here I am, still one of the unwashed and unpublished wannabe novelists. Clearly, in addition to working diligently on the MIP (Mess in Progress, since I’m still unsure if I can call it a Work in Progress) the answer is to sprinkle some eye of newt into my word cauldron, maybe wave a bit of sage, and wear my very pointiest hat.
Whatever we’re wishing for, I think most of us engage in a bit of magical thinking. Like, say, this woman. This is a hell of a story, an excellent snapshot of why supporting 45 and his merry band of fascists was a bad idea. She’s an American citizen married to a not-quite-undocumented Mexican immigrant. She voted for our current regime, because she thought they only meant they would deport the “bad ones.” Her husband wasn’t in hiding, checked in with ICE when he was supposed to, gainfully employed, paid taxes, legit, provisional Social Security number. Needless to say he is currently in jail awaiting deportation because ‘Murica. I’ve seen a lot of people comment on this story, some gleeful at her comeuppance, some who feel sorry for her. Me? Shrug. I take no pleasure in what has to be a painful and terrifying experience for her husband and their children, but I don’t feel sorry for her. He was very clear about his beliefs and vision, started his whole damned campaign with racial slurs about Mexican immigrants. This is an example of dangerous magical thinking; belief that no one can see you behind a clear shower curtain, that it’s ok and safe to wish harm on others; ok to strip rights, dignity, even humanity because other.
There were never any real plans offered by this President and his administration regarding how they would make things great. The closest they came to concrete plans involved who they were going to vilify, and how he could do whatever he wanted while keeping his supporters and increasing his net worth. His net worth, not yours. I’ve said this many times already, once you say it’s okay to dehumanize this group and that group, it’s a guarantee that more groups will be added to that list, and yours will surely be added sooner or later. I hope no one reading this is surprised and hurt to discover this, but 45 and his cronies don’t see you as a human being. You were a vote. If you voted for him, he’s done with you, if you didn’t, you never existed in the first place. Let’s go back to that disastrous bill, HurryUpandDieCare. This is from a meeting on Thursday night, with a no holds barred attempts to squeeze votes out of those who thought it was still too generous a plan. “Forget about the little shit.” The little shit is you, me, and the woman from Indiana whose husband is sitting jail.
A little magical thinking might carry me through months of work on this MIP, enough to (hopefully) craft a cohesive and interesting story, maybe adding the tears of a baby dragon will get me through the querying process. It won’t get me published. Magical thinking got 45 and company into office, it won’t make them responsible, compassionate, or skilled–and it surely won’t protect us from the damage.