News, and a Digression Involving Muscle Trigger Points and Art

Getting down to the last days of the Kickstarter… the project ends on Monday morning! Yesterday I posted more coloring book pages for backers (including one inspired by the “if it fits, they sit” meme of cute animals squished into unlikely places). I’ve got another couple to do today (or three, if we get another $27). Anyway, here’s the URL and pass it around! And thank you, as always. :)

Also, I have been forgetting to flog Morgan’s story so we don’t have the tips or reviews for today’s episode, unless they abruptly arrive. Either way is fine! We can still aim for our Saturday bonus if we miss today’s. Or not… it’s not like we don’t have enough to keep us busy lately. o_o

I’ve got a lot of administrivia on my plate (the newest thing is phone conferences with lawyers about contract amendments) and I feel like I’m not doing a ton of creative stuff, which disappoints me. I am hoping to clear my schedule up by mid-April so I can settle down and do some serious concentrating-on-writing. Which I haven’t been doing, even though this not-a-novel is 92 pages, because if I had been serious about writing this month it would be about twice as long.

I think I am overworking, but I notice I tend to overcompensate when I take on day jobs. I’m so determined not to let them slow me down that I keep working as if I have 40-60 hours a week to devote to my career even though it’s more like 12-15, and then I wonder why I’m a stressball. But some part of me thinks ‘if you let any of it go, any of it, then you’re yielding the fight to a world that wants you to give up the art’ and you can ask anybody who knows me well what happens when you make me choose between the art and… anything. Even my own health. The answer is always the art. :,

I remember in massage school they taught us that muscles develop trigger points–bits of hardened/”stuck” muscle fiber–because the body is trying to compensate for constant stress: if you’re going to hold your neck in an unnatural position that causes muscles energy and trauma to maintain, your body’s going to respond by knotting those muscles semi-permanently to save on the energy and prevent more damage. I know my response to things that threaten the art is unhealthy, but refusing to give up your creative impulses in a world that dismisses and degrades their value creates the spiritual equivalent of trigger points, little knots of defiance that stand in for the exhausting effort of fighting back against Every Little Thing that tries to tell you that what you do is worthless and you should go do Real Work That Matters. I sometimes feel like my entire soul is a series of these trigger points, but they’re the armor that keeps me from giving in to ennui, despair, resentment and anxiety… and they work.

When you release a trigger point in the body, if the stress remains, the trigger point reforms. I can watch this happen to my heart when I try to “release” my own reactions to having the art interrupted. I have relief for a little while, and then it reforms because the protection remains necessary.

I don’t know that there’s anything to be done about it. Ours is a culture that teaches us that art is too worthless to deserve money while simultaneously living on (when it doesn’t steal) the stories and art and entertainment it needs to thrive. As long as we live in a world conflicted on the role of art in society and in a person’s heart, I don’t see myself relaxing. :,

…and that was a rather unexpected ramble, and so long that another $15 appeared toward the next Laundry Dragon coloring book page. If I don’t wrap this up now, I might end up with an entire coloring book stretch goal, lol. :)

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