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To Conference or Not to Conference

I'm having a serious problem deciding if I should attend my region's SCBWI conference in July. Our region is awesome. Really, really awesome. We have some great speakers this year (although none that I'm seriously ga-ga over; they're great writers, just never happened to write any of my favorite books). The location is great; it's less than half an hour away and we have comfortable chairs (seriously, that is something not all regions have, and with my back, that's a huge thing). We're free that weekend. Seems like a no-brainer.


My house is currently in complete chaos (well, not entire house. My office, hallway, sitting room, and dining room). We've completely emptied my office and it's in boxes completely lining the hall (which has resulted in both my hips being constantly bruised as I bang into things) and making our sitting room into a complete maze of Indiana Jones proportions. My computer is on the dining room table and the bits and pieces of office that I need on a weekly if not daily basis are spread around the room. I don't like this because it not only makes my work intrude in our regular lives, which I really fight to prevent, it also means that Wyrmling associates watching "tv" (Muppets or Pixar or Sesame Street other things like that on YouTube or DVD or Netflix) with the dining room table, which is NOT what we want to do. But I sometimes have to put something on the computer if I'm to get a couple minutes of work done.

Right now, the office is 85% stripped of wallpaper. I'm hoping to finish that this weekend, if not before, and then Brian can start prepping the walls for painting. Our time for work is really limited, since we can only manage it during the weekends and we have a ton of stuff schedule this summer. Over the next two months, we only have 4 weekends at home, and many of those weekends have something one evening or another. For that reason, I'm giving serious thought to not going to SCBWI.

It feels wrong not to go. But the fact is, I'm not producing anything these days, so I wouldn't do a manuscript critique. The past few just kind of got me down because all I get is feedback that I don't have time to address. It just seems like a waste of my time and money. I'm also counting my "spoons" much more closely these days (if you don't know the spoon theory of chronic illness/disability, I highly recommend reading it!). Conferences have been known to throw my back out, and with Wyrmling I can't just lay around for a couple days unless Brian takes time off work. Also, if my back goes out, I, of course, can't do any work on my office or watch Wyrmling while Brian does work.

Sigh. I guess I've answered my own question. But like I said, it just feels wrong not to go. But I'm going crazy with my house like this and not being able to have a space to work. Once the office is done, it will be child proofed, so Wyrmling can at least be in there with me, but she can't climb up and get to things. I can also shut the door on work, which I've found I really need to maintain sanity. I guess it's damn the conferences, full speed a head on the office!


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 7th, 2012 03:21 am (UTC)

Thank you for the Spoons link. I've never read it before, and it does a great job of explaining what it's like having a chronic illness.

Even though you'd like to go to the conference, it sounds like working on your house and office would get you closer to writing. Even though the conference would be fun and interesting, I think you've made the better choice for the long haul.

Good luck with the house!

Edited at 2012-06-07 03:22 am (UTC)
Jun. 7th, 2012 01:22 pm (UTC)
Well, it doesn't help that I ran into my neighbor's son-in-law yesterday, who is going to the conference. Now I want to go. But I need to get my office done! But I want to go! Bleah. Maybe I should see how much I get done this weekend and next and see if registration is still open if I feel we've made good progress...
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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