Tuesday, January 02, 2007


Most people make New Year’s resolutions. I don’t, usually, but I did meet one of my first goals already:

To not blog on a Monday. Next time I'll try for one that wasn’t a holiday.

However, I still hit the blogs yesterday. Just not by posting. I kicked off the New Year on Campaign for the American Reader with my page 69 test. My thanks to Marshal Zeringue for the invitation to participate – Marshal did a fantastic job with the post. It’s the only place online you can get a sneak peek inside the book.

I’m a person of extremes and contradictions, something that fails to translate well into book characters. Readers jump up and cry, “INCONSISTENT.” But aren’t the majority of us just a little inconsistent?

For instance, I’m a lousy housekeeper. But don’t you dare touch my mess. Each pile in my office is in just the right spot and somehow, my brain has the clutter organized. I can be looking for the scrap of paper that starts, “Carly page 197 rape kit semen ad info” and know I’ll find it near the Vodophone receipt from my last trip to the UK.

I’m the small-town kid who was too chicken to go to Toronto alone for the day, despite growing up in a town a few hundred kilometers north, but got on a plane and flew to the UK with a return date scheduled for almost a year down the road and didn’t know people, just went with it.

Toronto, scary. London, England? Give me a map and a tube pass and I’m set.

See what I mean about contradictions?

I can be incredibly anal about my routine, right down to what I buy every year. I realized that yesterday, as I went through the process of taking down 2006 calendars and putting up 2007 calendars. Down went Edinburgh 2006. Up went Edinburgh 2007. Down went Wolves 2006. Up went Wolves 2007. Down went The Group of Seven 2006. Up went… well, damn. I know I bought it, but someone has obviously messed with my system of organizing my clutter. Now I’ll have to look for it. And since my clutter system really applies to my office, well, I’ll have to clean my office.

But are you sensing a bit of a pattern there? Oh, it isn’t that bad. I know people who are far worse. Besides, I also had an Ireland calendar last year and haven’t found one for 2007 yet. I can cope with some small changes. Baby steps.

Although I’m deeply disappointed it looks like I won’t be going to Scotland this year, so no 2008 Edinburgh calendar for me. Not sure my body can handle the shock. Probably a good thing I have a year to cope with that.

Now that 2007 is here I’m trying to get back into the work routine, and as of the official day 1 I’m failing miserably. I don’t like it when my system gets messed with. (I could blame a certain person for telling me to sleep in this morning, but if I hadn’t been up at 1:30 in the morning because I couldn’t sleep I wouldn’t have known he told me to do that.)

The busier Spinetingler gets, the harder it seems to be for me to keep up.

So, I’m working on organizing my work in some meaningful fashion. I keep hoping it will make me more productive. But it might mean I’m a bit hit and miss here over the next few weeks.

It might also mean I’m not so quick with emails.

All I know is, looking at my calendar for this month, it’s busy. Which means there’s no time left over for getting into trouble unless I get motivated now.

On an unrelated note, how’d you like to be in a book? Sean Chercover is having a contest to be a character, and all you have to do is sign up for his newsletter. Hey, it doesn’t mean you have to read them, but you should, because Sean’s a great guy and he’s interesting. And he didn’t pay me to say that.*

And in other random news, the cube is making a comeback. Never could figure that damn thing out.

* Threatened with blackmail instead.


Tanginika-Simone said...

Life is more interesting when there is a little inconsistency involved. Happy 2007. Much sucess to you!

JamesO said...

Remind me later in the year, Sandra. I'm sure we can come up with a 2008 Edinburgh calendar.

And I know exactly what you mean about mess. I find things by sitting still for five minutes and thinking hard. Then go straight to what I'm looking for. Nine times out of ten, that's where it will be. The other time, someone's tidied up.

And a happy new year to you, btw;}#

angie said...

No Scotland?! Gasp! Shock! Horror!

Unless, of course, this means you'll be traveling to some other, much sunnier & warmer clime...

Sandra Ruttan said...

Happy 2007 to you as well Tanginika. And I agree about those little inconsistencies making life interesting.

I mean, people think I'm rather outgoing because of the blog but I can meet people and not even converse. Don't mean to be rude, just in one of those introverted modes.

Aw James, feeding my addictions. Bless you! And happy new year to you as well - I'm glad someone knows what I mean about piles.

Unfortunately, cats are not good for piles.

Sandra Ruttan said...

Angie, tee hee. You never know... I think Vancouver is warmer than Calgary. And Seattle...

Anonymous said...

Sandra, you're not supposed to be this busy already. You're more of a workaholic than I am. But are you enjoying 2007 so far? All two days of it?

I like the feeling of a clean slate. Psychologically cleansing, isn't it?

And I challenge you to a "who's office is messier" contest. We'll exchange photos.

Sandra Ruttan said...

Julia, we'll do photos on our blogs if I can include one I took of evilkev's office a few months ago.

That would take first prize, hands down. At least you can see the floor in my office. Okay, so not all of it...

Enjoy? Ask me in a couple days!

Anonymous said...

My poor husband now lives in an apartment full of piles. I keep promising to clean them up because they really bother him, but the moment I do, new ones just take their place. The only time I have trouble finding things is after I've put them away properly. It's just not right. norby

Sandra Ruttan said...

Oh Norby, I know exactly what you're talking about!

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year, Sandra. Scotland in 1983 via backpack was about as much fun as I could handle (among other things, went to the book fair that was part of the Edinburgh Festival, and met Anthony Burgess and John Updike. A large part of The Pantheon for a literary boy like me).

Also, the pubs were great, there and in Glasgow. The hard part was making excuses so's you could leave.

Incredibly friendly place.

M. G. Tarquini said...

If you haven't seen what Bardawill left in my comment trail regarding your novel, you really need to get your ass over there now.

Put down beverages.