Well, there’s nothing normal about the limbo we’re in at the moment, and all the travelling, and all the travelling-to-come… but this week and last week and next week are going to be ordinary.

There’s school and work and writing. Bit of house work. Shopping for groceries (but nothing else because the big sales are a few weeks away yet and why would you shop now? That’d just be silly.)

The kids are well and happy and driving me up the wall.

ie. normal.

Luuk’s been playing Civilization on the computer so I’ve been getting LOADS of reading done. Love that. Finally getting around to reading Hemingway. I have a degree in American Studies, for heavens sake! Every second american in Paris (and more than that if you stick to people at Shakespeare and Company) is a bit obsessed with the man and he comes up in conversation too regularly. For a while I was not reading him because of that, and also because of Kat’s bit in ‘10 Things I Hate About You‘:

skip to 5:30

So I’m reading the thing Hemingway wrote about living in Paris. And if I make it to the end of that (because Kat ain’t all wrong) I’ll probably stop there. But I’m also reading Potiki, which I have meant to do for years. I even brought the book with me from New Zealand, yeah, two and a half years ago. So it’s about time.

And book number 3, because there are always 3, is Amercanah. Rave reviews got me curious, and so far, lovely prose and obviously an observant semi-genius writer, but I haven’t got far.

Note the absence of mush? I know. New leaf? Unlikely. Just taking a breather from the romance diet. What I’m writing, on the other hand… well, it might be a tad more serious than my usual flavour.

I have a slightly odd practise of under-writing first drafts and then fattening them up with important stuff like descriptions of characters and settings, later. Draft one will be 60 000 words, draft six will be 80 000.

So I’m fattening up a second draft. I’m a bit of a wuss and tend to gloss over hard stuff like emotions and anything to do with religion and faith. All my stories are love stories, so emotions are vital, but in this current work-in-progress the religion and faith stuff is increasingly central.

And challenging to write about without gross generalisations, cheese, and overly simple answers to incredibly complicated questions. I’d also hate to exclude, ie. I’m trying to make no assumptions whatsoever about my readers beliefs and values. Which is difficult, nay, impossible. But that doesn’t mean it’s not worth trying.

Now, a video of the kids and then I’ve got to get on with things.

Expressing affection can be complicated.

Good lesson to learn young.