Some of my friends are doing NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) this year, and I’m actually jealous. I wish I had the reserves of energy and time to tackle the project again, but my disheveled summer and some current deadlines make it too difficult to commit to something as formidable as 50,000 words in one month, novel or no novel.

That’s not to say, however, I won’t be writing in November. I want to soak up some of the momentum in the air and try to get back to my own writing, including blogging. I did so well with the poem-a-day challenge in April, and then it fell apart.

Actually, a lot of things fell apart. I don’t know that it’s fair to blame my lack of production on the hyperbaric treatments and late-July surgery. The trouble was, I had other commitments which used up all the time and energy I could spare. I finished up the screening judging of the rhyming poetry category for the Writer’s Digest annual contest in early July; read, evaluated, and provided 200-word critiques for twenty-five poetry books in WD’s self-publishing contest; and worked on some greeting card submissions. I was just able to make all my deadlines before the pain of the surgery took my legs out from under me for a couple of weeks, and the misery from the radiation wound was unrelenting.

The good news is, I had the last of eighty (yes, eighty!) hyperbaric treatments this past Wednesday. Because of the weird hours I like to work, I actually lost a couple hours a day because of the treatments (I couldn’t stay up late the way I prefer to, and I usually hit the sack again when I got home because I always felt so tired.) I’m starting to feel as though I’m reassembling my life to tackle things again; I can’t exactly say why I found the hyperbaric treatments so distracting even when I’d been out of the chamber for hours.

As far as NaNoWriMo goes, though, I’m back to having some deadlines that are going to eat up a lot of November. So, no novel for me this year. However, I am going to commit to writing. Even 5,000 words this month would be an improvement over the previous six months (not counting the 5,000+ words I wrote evaluating poetry collections in July). I haven’t written a poem since May, and my blogging has been miserably absent. I’m going to try to write something every day. Certainly I want to catch up on some blogging, although I’m not going to attempt NaBloPoMo (blogging every day for a month) or the November PAD at Poetic Asides (writing a poem to a prompt every day, with the intention of shaping the month’s output into a chapbook). A little of both throughout November, though ? Yeah, I think I can manage that.

Fingers crossed my health situation will continue to improve. I’m still not 100% with the radiation wound, but it’s progressed enough that the wound specialist cut me loose from any more hyperbaric treatments. (Okay, she did suggest going up to eighty-five, but I said I was done.) I’m extremely grateful to the team at the Bethesda North Advanced Wound Healing Center, especially my buddies in the hyperbaric center. When you see people continually from late June through late October, they become a part of your life. I’ll miss them, even though I’m not missing my two-hour weekday stints in the “tube.” And I’m still under the care of my wound specialist until everything is cleared up, so I may get to see them now and then when I return for doctor’s visits. In the meantime, I’m going to try to catch up on what I should have been writing about all summer, and then some.

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