I have my nose buried in my manuscript, making one more proofreading pass. After a few hours of this, I get a little bit goofy. Here’s what happens.
1. At page 165, my rear end starts to hurt. I realize I should stand up and stretch.
2. My neck and shoulders hurt too. I consider taking a walk.
3. My right hand, the one that’s tightly gripping my red pen, hurts. I decide to use that as my excuse for not fixing a meal tonight.
4. Thinking about what restaurant to choose makes me hungry. I run through a list of possible snacks…
5. Then notice it’s almost time to feed the cat. I decide to wait and do my stretching and walking after she’s fed.
6. Or just take a long break. Or a nap.
7. Or water the garden. I noticed some of the seeds were sprouting when I took out the garbage this morning.
8. Remembering the square where something is planted and starting to grow (but I can’t remember what it is), I stare down at the printed page before me and start through the list of vegetables I wanted, hoping to recall…
9. Oh, nuts. I see a run together sentence. Wait. I’m on page 175?
I flip back through the last ten pages and don’t see even one editing mark. And that’s when I realize I’ve been “reading” unconsciously for ten pages. Back to page 165. Focus.
10. Katie the Cat races down the hall and screeches to a stop by my chair. She gives me the death stare, which means I’d better feed her right now or else. And then I’ll stretch, take a walk, then a nap, water the garden, and return to page 165…again…later…or tomorrow.