So I managed my first 5.7 without a single fall yesterday. I'm pretty proud of myself. It was on the slab wall, but I did it. Also, my endurance is improving--I can keep coming back at something now after I've failed it repeatedly, so I got a second 5.7. (I've sent this one before, but I did it much better this time. Though with several rests, and a bunch of falls at the crux.) I need to go back and try that pink 5.7 again (the first one I ever got, which I still can't do without rests and a couple of falls) and also the blue route I haven't quite got, even though I think I know how to do it. Knowing and being able, alas, are not always the same thing. (Also, there's a black 5.7 that I couldn't doo before because the overhang kicked my ass, but I'm stronger now, so I want to try it again. It's not a technically difficult route: the rating is mostly for RAAAAAAAAAAR!, and my RAAAAAAAAAAR! is improving.)
But there's a 5.8 Alisa wants me to try Monday, so it's possible the other hard wall I'm working on will wait until Wednesday. I am scared of the 5.8. It has an overhang and the entire top half is smearing up a wall where the only handholds are this crack you have to lay back on.
There may be climbing outdoors on Sunday. That would be fun.
(Apparently, I have accidentally started something of a climbing renaissance among my writer friends, which I think is pretty cool. We are the buff chicks of SFF. Also, the new face thereof.)
Spring lasted a week this year, and I was in Michigan for it. The plum tree under my bedroom window is in full bloom, and violets and dandelions and tulips are all over the place. The Bradford pears are nearly over; the magnolias are already dropping blossoms. A mulberry along my running route is putting out first leaves, and the lilacs have heavy clusters of buds. I'm going to have to start running earlier, because it's already too hot by 8.
3.5 miles Tuesday (I only ran about 1.5 of those and walked the rest) and 2 miles today (ran 1 mile, walked 1. My lungs do not like the pollen and humdidity. Foolish lungs.) 204.9 miles to Lothlorien.
Meanwhile, I am reading "Endgames" and working on "Overkill," and working on the page proofs for All the Windwracked Stars. So there is actual professional work-related progress going on, which is a nice thing. Then after that a novelette for a Secrit Projekt (I promise I will tell you all about it as soon as I can) and a novella for Subterranean. And then maybe I will have gotten enough distance on Chill to come back to it with some Mad Skillsh and make it a Book That Works.
Other work that awaits me in the next year--rewriting By the Mountain Bound and One-Eyed Jack & the Suicide King, and then rewriting The Sea thy Mistress.
I'm having a very hard time seeing anything positive in my writing currently, which is frustrating and hard. Mostly, it all feels quite banal and amateurish to me. Flaccid, even. Where is the muscular prose of yore? Where is my ability to characterize obliquely and well? I feel confident when editing other people's work, but of my own all I can say is Dreadful! Dreadful! DREADFUL!
It's hard to write when you can't see what's working anymore. It gets in the way of that "carve off everything that doesn't look like an elephant" thing when the elephant is no longer visible to your inner eye.