Today, I have a few updates to share, so I'm going to devote a post to them!
First, an update to My Writing Career So Far. When I wrote that post, I was planning to stop writing #SnowQueenStory, as I didn't feel like I was in the right frame of mind for the story, and start editing #ProphecyStory instead--once I finished the latest edit of #OCDStory. I had a lot of edit ideas for #ProphecyStory that had been building up over the years, and they were haunting me every time I tried to read an epic fantasy novel.
I'm still plodding along in my #OCDStory edit. I'm doing a close line edit, because the prose at the beginning is better than the prose in the rest of the book. It's actually pretty normal to be slow on this kind of edit, which makes me feel less frustrated, LOL! There are a few other things I'm adjusting to. So It'll be a while yet, but I am making progress towards being able to hand the story over to my next beta reader.
However, I realized this week that #ProphecyStory won't ever be what the market needs, no matter how many edits I pile onto it. Like all my past work, though it has plenty of heart, it's too tropey and unoriginal. The premise also relies on big-level conflict that I'm not really suited to--I'm trying nowadays to follow the advice of this Tumblr post because it's really good advice that I haven't been able to get out of my head.
So I'm left now with just #OCDStory, the first part of #SnowQueenStory, and a hoard of ideas.
The good news is that my future book ideas have stronger premises than my past books. My chronic illnesses have forced me into taking the time to put more pieces together before I start writing, which means that I'm less likely to default into tropes while I'm pantsing my way through the story. (I'm still working off of a very basic and loose outline, so hopefully I'm not betraying pantserdom too much! 😋) I also have much more knowledge about the YA world and the book market than I did before, thanks to Twitter.
I actually feel a little freer now, having let go of the books I wrote before my chronic illness crisis started. My life's changed a lot since then, and so have I. I think in a weird way, letting go of #ProphecyStory is helping me to let go of the person I used to be. It's helping me to accept that I write slower and with more difficulty now. Instead of hanging onto the Stephen King writer, I'm letting myself be the George R.R. Martin writer.
A part of me does feel like it's a risk, letting go of all this prewritten content now that I'm so much slower, but I think I'm moving in a good direction. And of course, no story ever truly dies, both because of the impact it had on me and my life and because of the "zombies" that I constantly resurrect from past pieces, LOL. But by letting go of the actual written novel itself, I do think I'm moving on.
I feel like I'm ready to take on #SnowQueenStory again--once I finish the #OCDStory edit. 😋
Second, an update on Confessions of a Carboholic. After that post, I continued to have trouble for a while finding meal options that would give me enough protein without driving my chronically fatigued, cooking-hater self crazy. (I can't possibly express how much I hate cooking.) I discovered that I can't stomach any yogurt more protein-heavy than the regular kind. I then found a lone single microwave meal that worked for me, only to have them change the formula to something NOT Kira-friendly a few weeks later. (I HATE it when brands do that!) Luckily, I realized that the boxed mac & cheese I'd been eating on occasion actually did have enough protein, so that has become my new dinner staple. 🤷♂️ There's yet to be any noticeable effects from this more balanced diet, but whatever.
As of yesterday, I have some even more exciting diet news! As my regular readers know, interstitial cystitis can be worsened by diet choices. With my extreme pain starting out, it was necessary for me to grab the detailed list provided by the IC Network and eliminate everything from my diet that wasn't in the green column. WHICH IS A LOT OF THINGS. It's been one of the most frustrating parts of being chronically ill for me, because I love food. (Not cooking it. Just eating it.) I also had to eliminate a handful of other ingredients (including major ones like corn and rice) due to IBS symptoms, so I ended up with very few choices.
As my pain has improved (yay!), I've experimented with the yellow column items to see which ones I can and can't eat without worsening my pain. Some ingredients definitely have excruciating effects for me, even in small amounts, but there are some that I do well with. This has widened my diet in a lot of important and fantastic ways. Still, most foods in grocery stores and restaurants have ingredients from the red column, which lists the most common and worst IC offenders. Avoiding them has been really hard on me! The worst has been chocolate, because I used to be a diehard chocolate lover. So when Mom got her favorite kind of cake for her birthday--Black Forest--and I got a whiff of the scent, I felt my soul shredding a little bit.
She then reminded me that the foods that affect IC do vary a lot from person to person and that I might as well try out some of the red column foods just to make sure. The foods I've reacted to have mostly been acidic, and chocolate is a problem for lots of IC people because of caffeine and potassium, not Ph level. Obviously, this was very tempting. I decided to eat a tiny chocolate shaving off the top of her cake to see what happened. It was probably the most delicious thing I've EVER eaten. Y'all who can have flavors with your food, you're lucky! 😋 It takes a few hours for me to feel the impact when I eat bad foods, but I got through fine! Which was huge all by itself, but then I ate one of the bigger shavings with no ill effect either!
I'll have to keep testing to see how much I can handle, but I'm grateful for just this much! I've started going through the red column to see which foods might be worth testing out in the future. I'm gonna leave the more spicy and acidic stuff alone, and I still won't be able to eat most foods, which means I will probably still be sad in grocery stores. But I'm so happy to have a little more leeway. It'll be nice to have a bit shorter of a list to work off of!
Third, a brief Kira B. Edits update. I haven't talked about it much on this blog, but I thought I'd let you know that things are going well with my editing business! It was slow at first but started taking off recently. And I really love the work!
Fourth, a picture of my cat. I have nothing new to say about him, but this is a new picture. 😋
That's it; that's the post! I'll see you in November for a "taking stock" update.
Images via Pixabay on pexels.com, madness-and-gods on Tumblr, LivingShadow on Wikipedia, and mine.
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