I am well aware that I have been woefully neglecting my blog. To all you who come looking for book lists and NoVA children's/YA lit event news, I apologize. And to all you who come looking for updates on what I'm up to (yes, that means you, Mom), well, the lack of content is indirectly proportional to the amount of obligations in my life.
So, for this Friday Five, I have the five things preventing me from being a reliable blogger.
I spent Veteran's Day visiting friends in North Carolina. Tim, Annie and Maddie have made many appearances in this blog, including Thanksgiving two years ago, last fall, last Thanksgiving and this Labor Day. This time we headed down to their neck of the woods to help with remolding their house. Of course, we couldn't go to Jacksonville, NC, without a quick trip to the beach.
A much larger chunk of my time is now dedicated to my commute as my office moved into the city this month. Not that this is a bad thing. In fact, I've missed taking public transportation to work, and in the past 18 days I've to listen to tons of audiobooks.
I've been doing a ton of manuscript critiques. While this is tons of fun and a great way to deconstruct the mechanics of writing in order to build up my own skills, all of the manuscripts I'm currently reading are historical fiction, which takes a ton of time to critique effectively. But it also means I get to learn about exciting places like Revolutionary-era London and mid-evil Scotland and even a fictitious island in Polynesia during the Victorian era.
I started working with a personal trainer, which makes me feel obligated to do things like work out every day and pay attention to what I eat. Being healthy takes an amazing amount of time, effort and money (that I don't have). Lucky for me, two-year-old Maddie helped me out last weekend by showing me the proper form for downward facing dog.
And of course there's the ever-present grad school applications. In fact, I'm taking the day before Thanksgiving off—not to drive anywhere or prepare food, but to write my critical essay while everyone else is gone. But least you fear I'll spend all my time writing and no time giving thanks, I ordered a ready-made Thanksgiving so I won't miss out. (P.S. This is in no way an indication that I have nowhere to go for the holiday. Don't feel sorry for me as I've been invited to several dinners, but I desperately need to finish my applications.)