Tuesday, December 9, 2008

my Inner Slug

Flat, I am. More like crepe woman if that didn't have older-lady with wrinkly neck connotations. However, the morning mirror informs me that I am heading for, nay am in the joyous territory of the crepey neck, so we'll drop that subject because there's nothing I can do to stem the march of time across my person.

Should celebrate it, really. But, ungrateful wretch that I am, I tend to look in the mirror and mutter 'eughhhh' rather than anything more encouraging.

Perhaps it's the lack of light that makes me feel as if I'm spread too thinly across the surface of my life. Light finally makes it feasible to go for a run along the little single track road outside my house at 7.50 a.m. and disappears entirely round about 4.30 p.m. which makes for an awful lot of time spent in darkness* wondering why I feel so sluggish and dull. The discipline of going running in the morning is a good thing, and lifts my mood to the point where I feel like a goddess - but only for an hour or so until my Inner Slug reasserts itself.

I finished the artwork for Stormy Weatheryesterday, but far from feeling triumphant and full of joy at completing a set of beautiful illustrations for what I hope will be a profoundly reassuring lullaby, I feel numb. This is because all work and no play makes Debi a boring old fart, but sadly, still an impecunious one. From various sources I hear that there are no copies of any book I've made to be had in any of the high street chain bookstores in Edinburgh. For Edinburgh, this gloom-laden illustrator extrapolates The World. How the heck am I supposed to make a living if my books aren't actually in the shops? At the time of year when people actually buy the bloody things? How are any of us, apart from the top layer of bestselling authors, supposed to put bread on the table if our wares cannot be found in the marketplace?

No - don't answer that. I'll answer it for you. One of the places that books actually can be found is through a deep discount merchant who out of the goodness of his own heart, brings a huge variety of books into workplaces around the UK and piled high, sells them so cheaply that the creators of said books do not make much more than 1% of the cover price. The cover price which is massively discounted. Why would anyone ever want to go into a bookshop when they can buy insanely cheap books at work or online through the ironically titled bookstore named after a tribe of one-breasted women? Roll up, log on, who'll buy my luvverly books? Cheap, cheap, cheap.

I feel like one of those little birds that plucks the down from her own breast to keep her chicks warm.

But hopefully some utterly misunderstood, as yet undiscovered Caledonian biomechanism will register that we are almost at the lowest point of the year, and, accordingly, will swing the nation's cheerometers over into the black once we pass the solstice. Till then, I'm clinging on, white knuckled, gritted of tooth and totally fed up with this endless year's sodding treadmill which has me unable to step off, unable to admire the view, unable to do anything other than turn, turn, turn...

*15hours and 20 minutes ecksherly


Alwen said...

Well, "Dragons" is in 15 of the libraries in our co-op network, and 10 of the copies are checked out. That's in snowy, rainy, freezing rainy, sunless Michigan.

We're up on you: only 14:50 today.

I send you a webcam. But it's dark:

Debi Gliori said...

Alwen, for winter cheer coming a-winging out of the darkness, I love you. I love Michigan too - years ago when I was married to a young American, we used to go visit his family in upstate Michigan. Next to a lake called Crystal Lake, along the road a ways from a tiny town called Beulah. Those were long hazy summer days, and as we looked out on the deep blue lake, the family would tell us tales of how it froze over in winter, and how they would drive trucks out on the ice and make fishing camps....
Brrrrrr. 14:50, huh? Bring on the carbohydrates, I say.