What shall I worry about today? There are a number of choices. [NB: the state of the world is an ongoing given, no surprises there.]
Will the New Year's Eve dessert -- cherry and roasted almond ice cream for 17 -- get safely shopped for, made, frozen, transported and served intact, in the 37 degrees being forecast for Saturday?
Will I get my column done this morning in time to get to the market before all the cherries are gone? [Not if you sit here writing blog posts about fretting about it -- Ed.]
Will my pathological untidiness and I get the house cleaned up by Sunday when a dear friend is coming to lunch? She has a get-out clause about staying home in the cool, as Sunday will be even hotter than Saturday -- if the definition of a heatwave is five consecutive days over 35 degrees, as I believe it is, then Adelaide is cruising into one as we speak, according to the BOM -- so this one is flexible, but I must clean up anyway as a New Year thing. Just woke up out of a horrid dream about past crimes against tidiness. I see domestic detritus, in my case 95% paper products, as a sort of rabid, feral, malignant, hyperactive octopus that lives in the house and hates me.
Will I get next week's column done on time?
Will my father's 85th birthday be an easy, happy day, and what of my sister's hand surgery two days later?
Will the full afternoon of running writing and editing workshops for cluey postgrads be a success, or have I forgotten how to teach?
Will I be able to get access to everything I want at the library to write my conference paper? Never gave a keynote speech before. Anxiety coming in waves. Is this a good argument? Do I have enough examples and are they interesting enough? Do I even have an argument, and if so, what is it? (All Hons and postgrad students to whom I have ever sternly said 'But what is your actual thesis?' have my permission to snicker at this point.)
Will I be able to find my way to the Aldinga Library to give a talk about the Adelaide book, will I melt on the way if it's filthy hot, and if it's filthy hot will anybody turn up, and will I then be able to find my way home in the dark? (NB not worried about talk qua talk, but give me time.)
Have I got time to read all the books I haven't read yet by all the people whose sessions I'm chairing at Adelaide Writers' Week, and will those sessions all work out well?
Will I get my column done promptly every week in between all this stuff?
Will the ice cream go well? Will the lunch go well? Will the birthday go well? Will the surgery go well? Will the teaching go well? Will the conference paper go well? Will the Aldinga excursion go well? Will Writers' Week go well?
Look at that. Fretting fully booked till well into March.
Still Life With Cat is an all-purpose blog containing reflections on whatever is going on in the realms of literature, politics, media, music, dinner, gardening etc. Its original incarnation is Pavlov's Cat (2005-2008).
Read, Think, Write is about all things books and writing, and incorporates Australian Literature Diary (2005-2010) and Ask the Brontë Sisters (May-July 2007).
Blogs are by Kerryn Goldsworthy, a writer, critic and editor who lives and works in Adelaide, South Australia.