Strange golden smoke taking away from coffee seedsWriting and coffee. Has a nice, cuddly ring to it, yes? I picture a rainy day, a steaming mug, a scribe leaning back and conjuring up the perfect metaphor, a fresh pot dripping away in the kitchen. Facebook likes coffee, too. Guaranteed, I could post pointed arguments in defense of the serial comma, diatribes about social issues, and reams of inspirational quotes, but what gets the most traffic? “Two days without coffee and I’m still alive!”

So what happens when a three-cup-a-day habit stops cold turkey? Some pretty rotten stuff, as it turns out. When I started having weird symptoms, I searched the web for “caffeine withdrawal.” Yes, it does exist. Some want it entered into the DMS as a diagnosable mental condition. But I’m choosing to look beyond that to the benefits I hope to gain from a decaffeinated lifestyle.

I’m trying to stop the crash. For the last six months or so, I’ve started nodding off every afternoon at about three or four o’clock. Literally, if there were not a computer monitor in my path, my head would thump straight over onto the desk. A few days a week, that’s about the time I’m driving home. An inquiry with my doctor earned me a lifted brow and one sentence: “Try cutting out the coffee.”

That’s what I’m doing. I know that the withdrawal is a temporary condition, but I’m not nodding off anymore. To the driving citizens of the mid-Hudson Valley, you’re welcome.

On to other news:

Drawing Breath has had a pretty good week. It began with an e-mail letting me know the book won a finalist medal in the Indie Next Generation Indie Book Awards. With two awards now, I’m quite proud of my little book-child.

If you’d like to pick up a copy, the May fundraiser is still on. All royalties from sales of Drawing Breath this month will go to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. More details here. I’ll probably post a running count mid-month to see how we’re doing, unless it’s terribly embarrassing.

The IndieView posted an interview with me where we talk about Don’t Tell Anyone, writing, publishing, and how I shopped for my husband.

Speaking of Don’t Tell Anyone, I’ve entered it in two small contests. One is the “Spring Pitch” contest by Underground Book Reviews, one of the more high-profile review sites that specialize in indie books. My pitch will be on their Facebook page for the month. The pitch that gets the most likes wins a bit of money and a review. The second is running on Oprah’s Life Class page. Look for the bookmarked post titled “Are you the author of an ‘inspirational’ book?” If you feel inspired to swing me a “like,” I’d be most appreciative.

Well, now I’m inspired to work on my next novel. Yes, there is life after a WIP kicks the bucket. Enjoy your day!