Friday, 1 April 2011

Call me Quasimodo

One thing they never tell you about writing for a living is how hard it is on you physically.  Quite apart from ease of access to the fridge and the dire effects of sitting at a computer all day, there is RSI, the writer’s curse, and sundry other aches and pains.  Of course, there may well be writers out there who keep themselves super fit and go for a ten mile run every morning before they start work, but who wants to be friends with someone like that that?  Honestly? 

My latest grumble has been a really painful left wrist - not good on the typing front.  I assumed at first that it was RSI, but my mouse hand is fine, and it got so bad that I took myself off to a physiotherapist, who told me that there was nothing wrong with my wrist but that I had major problems in my back and neck caused by tension.  (Tense?  Me?  Why on earth would I be tense with five major deadlines before Easter?)  He suggested acupuncture, but the idea of having needles stuck into me just doesn’t do it for me, so I went off for a second opinion. 

That physio (nice, Irish, about 12) gave me a thorough examination, concluded that the tendon running up from my thumb was probably inflamed but agreed that ooh, my neck was bad. And then, in a casual aside, she informed me that I had a HUMP!  You can probably imagine how happy I was about that.  I am short enough as it is, without bowing down with a hump. 

The dire prospect of a dowager’s hump without even the advantages of being a dowager sent me off to a remedial Pilates session yesterday.  My Pilates teacher was brilliant but sucked in her teeth when she had a good look at me.  It turns out that not only do I have a hump, but my head sticks forward like a tortoise and I’M CROOKED!  When she pointed it out, I could see that one shoulder was indeed higher than the other.  No wonder I’m such a mess.

I was amazed at what hard work the Pilates exercises were, as the movements are very tiny, but I am resolved to do them every day until I have beautiful, elegant posture like my teacher’s and don’t have to lurch around like a cross between Quasimodo and the Poisoned Dwarf.  And sometime I’ll have to fit in writing the rest of this book too.  Am on Chapter 6, which means a crisis is due any minute … and as far as I know there's no exercise to cure that!


  1. Have you tried a chiropractor? Helped me with my crooked right leg.

  2. FIVE deadlines!?! I hope you’re taking the rest of the year off.

    LOL I've done remedial Pilates too and been fascinated by how weak my core and stabilising muscles are. I've been having trouble with my neck positioning too and I blame the computer (because I can) for making me stick it out =)

  3. The rest of the year off? I wish!!! But the plan is that after Easter there will only be one big one to worry about.

    Good to know you got some help, Maria. I may yet end up with a chiropractor, but for now am religiously doing my Pilates exercises. It's going to take a while to undo 20 years of using the mouse with my right arm - am now completely skewed to one side as a result!