I get a lot of ideas while I exercise, as long as I'm not trying to do anything too coordinated. I used to like step class, but I was the lady stepping to the right while everyone else stepped left. That's because whether I'm walking around the block or I'm in the gym, mentally, I'm actually in Story World.
But people keep interrupting me to be friendly! Stupid friendly people.
Okay, I don't mean that. I like friendly people. But how do I politely say to someone, "I don't want to walk to work with you. I'm thinking of something really good. Can you walk a few steps ahead of me or something?"
I ran into a friend at the YMCA last week and I wanted to cry. No! Tuesday nights are my gym nights and I don't want to chat with anyone! I'm plotting!
When friends ask me if I want to join exercise classes with them, I make up sad excuses like I'm too out of shape to exercise in front of people. (The sad part being how close that is to the truth.) I was riding my bike over the summer which was awesome, but the kids always wanted to go out with me. I can't say no to a request like that. I like my kids.
So, what do you do to get people to leave you alone? Or do you just take a deep breath and realize it's better to smile and chat and put your story aside for the sake of politeness?
Actually I have the same problem when I get my hair done. As soon as I'm deep into a novel or internal plotting, my hair dresser lifts up the dryer and asks me how my kids are. I'm thinking of offering her extra tips to never ask me about my kids, but that would be, well, extremely eccentric, to put it kindly, wouldn't it?
-- Kate, Miss Perfecting the Pages