Barbara Barrett

Romance at Work

Midwest Musings: What to Do When Your Internet’s Down

Photo by Leslie Sloan, Ignite The Light Photography

Photo by Leslie Sloan, Ignite The Light Photography

By the time you read this, our internet service will have been restored, but today while I’m writing this article, I am frustrated, to say the least. In the last twenty-four hours since we’ve been without access to our email and other websites, I’ve discovered just how much time and energy I’ve come to place on them. It’s not the end of the world, by any means. All I have to do is leave the house and find somewhere that has free wifi. It’s the convenience of having the service right here, handy, I really miss.

While I’m reassuring myself that our provider will have the service up and running shortly, I’ve also been exploring what to do with all this frustrated energy in the meantime. Why not share with you? Maybe I’ll start to believe it myself, if I put it down on the screen.

First and foremost, I haven’t lost access to any of my manuscripts. I can continue working on the one in progress. This initial rereading of something I wrote a few years back isn’t easy on the ego – my writing style has changed, hopefully improved, in the intervening months – but the task certainly offers hours of something to keep myself occupied. Problem is, I’ve grown accustomed to stopping every so often and checking something on the Internet, like my latest emails or some site of the moment. Can’t do that now. Have to find other distractions.

Did I say distractions? Well, there you have it. I apparently have difficulty remaining focused on my writing for very long periods of time. Not such a great self-discovery, but definitely something to consider when I wonder why I’m not more prolific.

What else can I be doing? When I was recently prepping another manuscript for submission to my editor, I used that, as well as the heat and humidity, as an excuse not to walk for exercise. No excuse today. So I started the week off right by getting myself out and about.

I’ve also been using my writing as an excuse to hold off housecleaning. We’re still in the process of moving in, so it’s been easy to justify keeping household maintenance to a minimum, like doing the dishes and laundry and making the bed. Now I have the “opportunity” to do that sweeping and dusting I’ve been putting aside. Not glamorous and, for me, not really fun, but certainly beneficial.

After the above, there’s always the books I’ve downloaded to read and haven’t gotten to. All I’ve been managing to keep up with are the books for my book clubs. While I’m at it, I might even write a few reviews. I’m sure those authors would appreciate the effort.

Finally, this brief – I hope it’s brief – Internet-free period is allowing me time to write this article and a few others. So to quote a cliché, every cloud has its silver lining.

 

Follow-up: Next day. The Internet is back! Yeah!

 

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