I plead Putter-hood

Most families have little  sayings that work as in-group shorthand.   Some of these sayings pass from one generation to the next. A few of ours come directly from the Mathematician’s family in England. The phrase “mum’s squeeking,” for example. Most often used in a car, in a lot of traffic.

One such phrase or term which I use, and which is often used about me, is “Mum’s in a Putter.” (Putter rhymes with, but is not as delicious as, butter.)

This is a state of complete discombobulation, where I’m so distracted and unable to focus on the here and now I walk from kitchen to study and back again five times before I remember (1) what my destination really is; and (2) why I was headed there in the first place. It’s used, in our family, about the week after having a baby. Anybody who has ever had a baby knows what that week is like. That New Motherhood Putter-hood. Another example: blood draws are so traumatic for me,   for  the whole day after I am deep in the grips of Putter-hood.

Finishing a book is also a one-way ticket to a Putter of gigantic proportions. Finishing a series? My first experience that has got me in a Putter that has lasted more than two weeks. Yes, I am writing to you from the very heart of a Putter.

There were many things I meant to get done these first couple weeks of freedom (because it does feel as though I’ve been let out of a box). One example: I had meant to start posting regularly in the first week of January.  Lots of material to read and organize for the revisions on English with an Accent. Notes on the next novel.  I wanted to get the corporate taxes sorted out. I’ve got a stack of about twenty books, and I intended to be half way through that stack. So far I’ve read one novel (The Host, Stephanie Meyer) and run aground on another (We Need to Talk about Kevin, Lionel Shriver). Kevin in not the kind of book I can read in a Putter. Another time I think I’ll like it a lot, but not now. I’ve made more progress with Shannon Burke’s Black Flies. But two books in two weeks? I think I’ll have to make more of an effort to extract myself from this particular visit to Putter-hood.

Want to help? Ask me a question I can answer here. It might give me a push in the right direction.

8 Replies to “I plead Putter-hood”

  1. You know how sometimes, the media (or is that parents) will say of a writer: “she was always writing down stories, since the age of…” – I wonder if writers with children look for signs of the writer being passed on, and if you have any thoughts on that hereditary nature, if it is so, of writing. Habitual nature?
    My brother recently sent me a short story he wrote, and it reminded me vividly of my father’s writing attempts. Same sort of images, same macho-ish point of view. Perhaps it was similar because it was similar topic-matter (political thriller), but even the choice of topic was interesting to me, since my brother had not been aware of Dad’s fiction writing preferences.

  2. What do you think about The Host by Stephanie Meyer? I tried her Twilight series, thinking I would have trouble relating to the writing since it was YA, but I very much enjoyed Meyer’s style. I was thinking about trying The Host, but I haven’t spoken to anyone who has read it.
    Congrats on finishing the Final Book! Can’t wait to see what you move on to next.

  3. Heh. When I ‘finished’ the garden this year I hit a trough that I referred to as “post-plantum depression.”

    I go through this all the time — something to do with concentrating so much on one task.

    When I worked in a job that required us to produce proposals full-time, after a deadline I’d find myself opening the refrigerator door when the microwave beeper had just gone off. Mind totally elsewhere.

  4. Rosina, I would also like to hear what you thought of “The Host”.
    I have read and enjoyed the Twilight series on the reccomendation of some Full Bookshelves forum friends.

    On a totally unrelated matter- I hope you are having an enjoyable- and a however you wish it to be – birthday.

  5. Don’t bother reviewing that Sawtelle book for me. I read a little about it, and I have NO intentions whatsoever of reading it. I need some shred of happily ever after in my reading.

    And so there were the years I went back to school for my MBA while still maintaining a consuming job of, oh say 50 intense hours a week. I went to work, studied, ate meals, and relaxed when I was in class because I couldn’t multitask there. Not much else got done. Finally I graduated. In the big box of gifts my husband gave me was a Michener novel. I consumed it in 2 days. That gave me a clue that maybe, just perhaps, I needed to slow down a little from my driven state. I didn’t realize I had been in an infinite Putter.

    A question? I’ve discovered Pandora.com and am immersed in Renaissance and Baroque music. La, a gift from the gods. What music do you enjoy? And do you listen while you’re writing your novels?

  6. So, I’m going to college and have been for the last 8+ years. I am just now taking college freshmen English (What have I been doing for 8+ years then? Mostly choir, and taking care of two adorable children). This semester the required text is Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. I have never read this book, and have only grown up with images from the movie. Wow is about all I can say. I guess I might be a little shell shocked. I’m not used to the kinda old english wording. I’m just curious if you (or anybody) has read it, and what you think of it?

  7. I’m curious too what music ya listen to and how it relates to your writing(if at all)
    I dunno if it’s the same thing but I’ve found I got a lil lost after finishing up various projects in the past.Transitional flux I s’pose haha.

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