- from Susan
Self-discipline? Not much. Witness, six pounds over the weight I was when I returned from France. I’d say, “Go figure,” except that it isn’t hard to figure out why. Trader Joe’s dark chocolate-covered raisins, local chef Robert Lambert’s hot ginger caramel sauce (www.robertlambert.com) over ice cream, artisan breads from the farmers’ market.
Self-discipline? How about my promise not to buy more hard cover books, because there is simply no room for any more on any shelf in the house. Promise broken at least a dozen times in the last couple of months: Louise Penny’s “A Trick of the Light,” Rhys Bowen’s “Naughty in Nice,” and Ruth Rendell’s “The St. Zita Society” among the fiction tempters; E.O. Wilson’s “The Social Conquest of Earth” among the non-fiction.
Self-discipline? My house is a temple to dust (see above re books) and I assured myself that I would take down, dust, and re-shelve all the books this summer, while I could leave doors and windows open. Percentage completed? Zero, and now there are more books to dust (see above). In self-defense, I must add that it’s been a typical summer here, cozied up to the Pacific Ocean, which translates to frigid most days. Now that kids are back in school, it’s warm and lovely, so I will promise myself again. Check back in November.
The one area where I did have admirable self-discipline is in turning in two manuscripts this summer. Two! On time and in decent shape. Come to think of it, my lamentable failures may be directly related to my one success. I graze, snack, demand sugar when I’m stuck anywhere in my writing. I buy books as rewards to read in an orgy of self-indulgence when I have turned in my work, and I look up from the computer screen, blinking, to notice the mess in my house right about the time I type “The End.”