Saturday, November 13, 2021

A Miscellany of Updates

I keep thinking I'll get back to more frequent posting, and life keeps getting in the way. I miss writing, though, and am trying to reconfigure life to make more space for it and other hobbies. 

I wish I could say I have happy updates from the last post, but for the most part I do not. Our hamster did not make it. She seemed to be recovering, but then about three weeks after surgery she took a turn for the worse, stopped eating, and eventually died. We tried very hard to save her, but we could not. She died three weeks ago today. We miss her so much. I am hoping Petunia eventually decides she is ready to love another hamster, but I think this needs to go on her schedule and she is not ready yet. 

That is the only truly bad update, though.  Everything else is just meh. I did not learn much from the Holter monitor. It did not catch an incident of irregular heartbeat. It did show that my heart rate spikes up to about 100 several times a day for no apparent reason, but my doctor did not seem worried about that. I have realized that I can feel it when my heart rate spikes like that and it is mildly unpleasant. It always passes quickly (in less than a minute). I am not particularly satisfied with the answers I've gotten from my doctor and am thinking I might try seeing a different doctor about this. However, I also think there is a very good chance that stress is playing a role and so unless something gets worse, I am going to try getting my stress levels down first.

The main stress-generator is work. This is the first weekend in a long time when I've not had to do some work, and I only made that happen by working for a bit after dinner last night. This is partially due to the fact that I am trying to prioritize my Friday afternoon rollerblade, which takes about an hour and a half out of my Friday afternoon. But this used to be no problem to do without having work spill into the weekend. 

The extra hours are only part of the problem, though. The bigger issue is in the nature of the work. I realized when I came back from our summer vacation that the job had evolved into something that was no longer a fit for me and started working to find a new role within my company. I have done that, but the move will be part of a larger reorganization within the company and so the timing is complicated. I think I will be stuck doing my current job through the end of the year and then there will be a transition period of several months before I can be fully over in the new role. This is not ideal. I still think that staying at this company will turn out to be the right choice long term, but in the short term it means I can't remove one of the biggest sources of stress in my life.

I have also come to the conclusion that I can no longer run Annorlunda Books in a way I feel good about. I am not shutting down, but I am scaling back. I won't be publishing new books for the foreseeable future and will not be doing much promotional work. I have offered all of my authors the option of reclaiming their rights to their books. Not everyone has decided yet. A few have requested rights back and several have decided to leave their books with me. I am aiming to have everything sorted by the end of the year. The Annorlunda edition of books that have been reclaimed by their authors will disappear from the online stores before the end of the year. If you've been thinking about getting one of the books I publish, now is the time! I am sad to make this change, but I feel better having formally acknowledged the reality that I couldn't make Annorlunda Books succeed in the way I had hoped. I think I will feel less stress and guilt about this going forward now that I've told my authors what is going on and given them the choice to reclaim their rights.

Reading back through this post, I think I sound sadder than I am. There are happy things right now, too. I am also working on rolling with life's punches a bit more and having some success with that. Maybe at some point I will write about the things that have helped me there. For now, though, here is a new song out of New Zealand that I have been enjoying:

 Have a good weekend, everyone!


  1. Anonymous1:19 PM

    THANK YOU for writing and especially for the song. Very helpful and positive.
    Sending you sympathy for loss and so much hope for strength as you get to a, hopefully, less stressful new position which is clearly a long road and stressed time away. Hope knowing there will be change is a support in the process.
    I am your constant anon who appreciates you so much.

  2. Good to hear from you!

    I am sorry about the work situation being such a long transition. I've got the same timeline for reducing work stress too and it's very suboptimal. But. Longer term sticking it out should be the wise course of action so I am going to do my best to get through as well.

    Also sorry to hear about Annorlunda not working right now but glad you're not shutting it down. Who knows what the future holds but it's nice to think that maybe once our worlds are more...stable(?) you could ramp back up if you wanted to. I hope so anyway.

    I hope we can both get to a better place professionally sooner than expected. <3

  3. I hope work calms down soon!


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