I’d scheduled the end of last week and the beginning of this week to begin the revision of my second novel. I promised to turn it in at the end of the month. I expected to have some delays, notably from the fact that I don’t have much time on Thursdays and Fridays and Saturday and Sunday were booked solid.

And the week before, another problem emerged. My cat, 11-12 years old, has been steadily declining in health. He seems miserable all the time and he has gone from trouble jumping to trouble walking. So we booked a vet appointment and it was scheduled Tuesday.

The cat, Azrael, did not handle this well. He peed on everything, the cat carrier, the people at the vet. Everything. This was compounded by the fact that the vet took one look at him and said, “That’s not arthritis. That’s complications from diabetes.” Diabetes tests require urine. The cat didn’t have any urine left. Because you pee a lot when you have diabetes.

So I took him back the next morning and we left him there all day. They took blood and urine, he peed on everything again, and we brought him home.

So Thursday we got the official confirmation he had diabetes. Friday I went in before work and they taught me how to give insulin shots. I bought a lot of expensive food, insulin and a big supply of needles. My game cancelled that night, so I was able to give him his first shot.

The difference was like night and day. The cat changed entirely. Like pod people. I call him Pod Cat now. Within an hour, he went from being lethargic and near crippled to hurling a box of pizza to the floor so he could attack the bits of feta cheese that flew out. Spunky. Mischievious. Pod Cat.

But back to the book. The night before Pod Cat’s miraculous turnaround, I finally got to work on the novel. And Friday night I continued it. The biggest complaint I received was that it took too long ramping up, so I reorganized and cut more than a thousand words. I turned seven chapters into five, because all the scene changes were hurting my pacing instead of helping it.

It took three days, but I finally finished those opening chapters. Now I can push forward with the rest of the book. I’m behind schedule, but I set my schedule with some extra time in mind, so there’s no need to panic. The moment I post this, I’ll be back to the grind.

And for those following along at home, my experiment of using Black Desert Online as a brain hack is going fine so far.

[Originally posted at: http://www.robertjdefendi.com/main/2016/5/15/second-novel-and-trips-to-the-vet]

The next installment awaits...
Slouching Towards Amazon: LTUE Post Mortem