The countdown begins to my novel-writing challenge. I have ten days and I’m terrified that I won’t get everything done that I need to get done before I start filling my days with writing and nothing but.

There’s this essay rewrite that is proving much harder than I thought it would be, prep for a meeting next week about another book project I’m working on, a million small tasks, like reading for my writing group meeting tonight, calling my dental insurance company to find out why I’m being billed for a filling I had a year ago, grocery shopping.

If that’s not enough, I’ve apparently decided to put myself up for the crafty mom of the year award. Instead of buying the perfectly adorable cuddly dragon costume I found at, I showed Aidan an insanely complicated do-it-yourself version I found online. He fell in love with it, because it involves taping a flashlight into the mouth so it looks like the dragon is breathing fire.

And so I spend my evenings painting and repainting cardboard teeth. Aidan wants to be a red dragon, so eventually we’ll be painting the epic dragon head red, but we’re not there yet. This when I’m trying to cross every single thing off my list so I can devote November to writing a book.

I have no one to blame but myself. I think deep down I like to set up the hoops and freak out as I watch myself try to jump through them.