Charlotte's Web

Blogging my world since 2006

From the Frontline


… of suburbia, here is my life today:

Having a slight hangover, after cooking dinner for five girlfriends last night. We ate guacamole, a butternut and feta gratin, green salad with asparagus, carrot and walnut muffins with marscapone orange cream. We drank some bottles of rose, my favourite summer drink.

Sniffling somewhat, from the hayfever that prevents me from enjoying early summer with my whole heart.

Worrying about how Chapter Six has gone all spongy in the middle and how I am going to give it its edge back.

Reading other writer’s blogs for tips and finding this from Scott of Poetic Chaos:

When I get stuck while I’m writing, it’s usually because I realize there’s a problem with one of the characters. I’m not ‘getting it’ where they’re concerned. One of the ways I try to work around that is free writing. I’ll just open a new window and start writing for ten or fifteen minutes. Sometimes, it turns into a two way conversation between the character and I. Other times, it’ll be a journal entry, or just free association.

If I really get stuck, I play around with scenes that I’ve already written, and try writing them from the ‘stuck’ character’s perspective. It lets me into their head a little more, and gets me in tune with the character.

And I think a lot of voice is like that. It’s about tuning in. Sometimes, you’ve just got the frequency off a little bit – if you jiggle the knob, you’re going to get that clear crystal picture.

Enjoying the sensation of worked-out muscles in the gluteus maximus from my run yesterday and aerobics class with the Tommy the Teletubby on Monday.

Wondering if I will ever lose the five kilograms I joined the gym five months ago to lose, and considering my friend G’s tip to go and have my thyroid tested, but fearing that my thyroid will be fine and that the way forward will be a sparrow’s diet.

Puzzling about how I have got myself into hosting a sleepover for four girls between the ages of six and eight this weekend, and steeling myself to be firm with the one invitee who knows no boundaries. The solution may be to tranquilise with DVDs and popcorn.

Dreaming of leaving for Berlin next Thursday for six whole days of aloneness and writing.

Missing my husband.

Feeling inspired by this piece of wisdom, collected at Pippa’s Porch this morning:

The easiest thing to be in the world is you. The most difficult thing to be is what other people want you to be. Don’t let them put you in that position.

What’s happening in your world today?

Author: charlotteotter

Novelist, feminist, crime writer

8 thoughts on “From the Frontline

  1. I’m not certain if you need/want to be all alone… but if you would like to meet for a drink or lunch… I’d love to meet you.

  2. Oh how I miss girls’ night! I didn’t realize how much until I read your post.

  3. Wow, will you come cook for me?

    I was convinced I had a thyroid issue as well. Blood tests revealed that, in fact, I really just have to work harder and eat less than I though. Thyroid is fine.

  4. It’s not a bad idea to have your thyroid tested, because it’s actually a pretty important organ aside from weight/metabolism. I had undetected hypothyroidism and I have lost 5 lbs. since starting replacement therapy! (Not that that was the point, just a happy effect.) And of course you know that you might not be losing weight, as muscle weighs more than fat, despite the exercise…so “overweight” and “healthy” aren’t always in opposition.

    And I think tranquilizing with DVDs and popcorn sounds perfectly reasonable for a sleepover party. Plus a glass or two of wine for you.

  5. i would only get your thyroid tested if you have other symptoms…like if you feel depressed and/or hyper, are losing your hair, are actively GAINING weight, that sort of thing. At least, that’s my experience with people I know with thyroid problems…it’s never just a weight thing, and generally one is gaining weight out of the blue, nearly uncontrollably.

    that advice about writing ROCKS and makes me realize that’s why I’m struggling with some of my characters. Good stuff.

    also, the advice to be myself couldn’t have come at a better time, since I am having a very stressful work day dealing with people who want me to be what I am not. Thanks so much, Charlotte. As for my day, I woke up finally having lost the weight I lost in Chicago (good), met with a couple wonderful people at work on a project (good), returned to a shitstorm at the office (bad), had a nice lunch (good), am dealing with said shitstorm all afternoon (bad), will be going to the recycling center and yoga (yawn) but am going out with my husband tonight for drinks and dinner (hurrah!)

  6. Good luck with the sleepover. I haven’t had a girls’ one yet, just boys all staying up late to tell each other terrible jokes.

    I wouldn’t worry about the weight, I’m sure it has all become muscle, you sound like you’re getting terrifyingly fit!

    My day has included no exercise, lots of rain, reading the Secret Garden, too much time at the computer doing bits and pieces, doling out tissue salts and homeopathic remedies at frequent intervals to get rid of coughs and colds before we fly to the UK and snacking on milk tart, having made three yesterday to use up the 2 litres of milk that was about to go off two days before its sell by date. Plus sorting out a major coloured pencil dispute that was threatening to overturn the shaky state of peace in our house.

  7. Oh, sigh. Sigh sigh sigh. Don’t make me think of writing. You’re writing so well about writing that it’s making me feel I should write.

    I hate it when that happens.

  8. Wow – that’s good wisdom. My problem is that all too often it seems easier for me to be what other people want and I have no clear idea of what I want to be for myself. But that’s all the wrong way around. I also think you re perfectly healthy, charlotte and that your weight is exactly the right weight for you. I’m getting to the age now where I realise that a little padding is essential to prevent those wrinkles taking hold!

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