As my deadline looms fast, every moment becomes one of increasing anxiety. In all ways this assignment, as I’m choosing to think about it, represents the most Herculean academic effort of my long and checkered career. I say assignment, because the only way I can wrap my mind around the task of writing this, the fact of writing this, is to think about it a series of term papers, the last battles of a finals week chock full of science writing. Deadlines. Successive, relentless deadlines that I’ve always been so good at pushing up against, finding their soft edges and making my space there, in the interstices, always on the cusp of too late.
Of course I’ve left things slide too long. It’s not a new story, or one that is particularly mine in this process, but nonetheless my deadline feels like a cliff, a chasm spanned by a bridge in hopeless disrepair and yet I go speeding toward it, one hand on the wheel, pedal to the floor, focused more on what’s on the radio than what’s in front of me.
Things I’ve done to avoid writing: reorganize the kitchen cabinets, re-digitize my CD collection, rearrange furniture throughout the house, laundry, put the furniture back the way it was before.
Help. I’m drowning in my own self-pity.