More tattoos! Still…

More tattoos! Still henna, though. This time I got them in black henna, which is much more dramatic than the red-brown...I'm not sure which I like better, though. The brown looks more Indian. I also didn't have nearly as good an artist as last time, so while I got a similar design on my chest (dragon on a mehndi-style necklace), the dragon is much chunkier and the necklace is more lopsided than last time. But I'm very pleased with my matching bracelets, and overall, reasonably content. Will be interesting if it lasts 'til Halloween -- I'll pretty much have to be Andromeda then, 'cause I just can't imagine Lady Macbeth with mehndi patterns (and sure, Andromeda with them doesn't make much sense either, but at least it's a dragon (and if you watch Xena, you'll realize that Gabrielle took mehndi all over Greece anyway, so it's not really anachronistic :-)).

I did have a good time at Lisette's, though not as academically productive as I would have liked. I did very little grading -- that was mostly because the weather was miserably hot. What work I did do, I did in an air-conditioned cafe...when I was in Lisette's apartment and the temperature was over 90 degrees (!), I wasn't much inclined to do anything other than doze and read Foxtrot comics (she has a lot of comic books). It was wonderful spending time with her, as always.

I am a bit excited because I wrote a very rough sketch of a new story in the Indian stories series. It's a little odd calling it one of those, since both the characters in it are old Jewish men...but one of them has a son sort of marrying into an Indian family, so it's close enough, yes? I think this might actually be the last story in the collection...a little hard to say right now, though. It's tricky not putting preachy words in his mouth -- it's tempting to make my point very explicitly with him, and it would be easy to do so, but it wouldn't be fair to him (and it wouldn't be as good a story). Subtlety. Not my strong point. Must work on subtlety. :-)

But the real reason I'm excited is that it's the first new story I've written in...well, forever. I'm trying to remember when, actually -- I don't think I wrote anything this summer. Hopefully it was no further back than spring. I suppose I could check the journal and find out, but it's not that important. I have been revising, but going more than a month or two without writing something new is scary. I start wondering if I've lost it. If I'll ever be able to write a story again. I don't get as far into the nasty downward spiral of that kind of thinking as some writers do -- usually my good sense kicks in long before it's truly depressing. But it does mean that there's a nagging little voice in the back of my head saying, "You should be writing, you know." Now that voice will be silenced for a bit, and I just have to listen to the one that says, "You should be grading, you know."

I did actually have an idea for another story, too. The Melcher people think I should include a story of mine in Aqua Erotica, which I hadn't planned on, but which I gather from them is reasonably standard. I'd like it to be one of the Indian ones, but none of those are particularly water-related. I don't think I have any water-related unpublished stories (even of the published ones, only "Season of Marriage" jumps to mind), so I'm just going to have to write something. And I should probably stop talking to y'all and go poke at that idea and see if it turns into anything. :-) Hope you had a good weekend too...

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