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Friday, June 22, 2012

Letting Go


I am a clearing, cleaning, whirlwind of clutter destruction. It is all coming down and out. Yesterday I tackled my daughter's room and today it will be the boy's. Gone baby gone, every outgrown toy, book, shirt and sock.

It needed to be done.

When I had finished with her room, I was a tiny bit worried that she would be shocked. The room looked sparse, bare in comparison to only hours before. I took everything off the walls (she wants to change the paint color) and Space Bagged all the stuffed animals except for BooBoo. The Barbie's are packed and waiting to go to Goodwill and all her princess dress up clothes are boxed and waiting to travel to a younger cousin who will actually play in them. Her room looks like we are either just moving in or getting ready to move out and so, I wondered if there might be some emotional reaction. Some tears, some changing of the 9 year old mind. Some, "No, I'm not ready." or "My animals can't breathe in those air tight bags!!"

But she only smiled and then ran across the street to get her friend so she could see too.

Her room is like a blank slate, ready to start over with her bigger girl ideas.

It got me thinking (because when I'm cleaning is when I do some of my best thinking) about letting go. About moving on and making space for new things. It can be hard, it can be work, it might even be sad--but it's important. Unless we want to be forever stuck, buried under the clutter and dust of outgrown things, outgrown ideas, we have to have to learn to let go and move on.

I have to learn to let go.

I started writing something completely new and sent the first two chapters to my agent who was very encouraging about continuing with it.

It feels good, amazing even, to be writing again. But I'll be honest, I'm not yet over my old MS. I miss him and all the promises for the future together we had planned. If my old MS called with an offer to get together, a writer's booty call, I'd go running back to him with a slick black pencil in hand.

Maybe I just need some more time.

Is there something you're hanging on to? If you cleared some mental space, would a room open up for something even better?     


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Getting There

Pic of the kids fishing last weekend with their dad and granddad. Note: No writing occurred this day. 

What does your writing routine look like? I'm curious because I seem to have misplaced my usual 4 am, crawl out of bed, grope for the auto-brewed coffee, stumble back up the stairs to the computer and crank out a couple thou. Do you have a schedule that is currently working for you and, if you do, can I borrow yours? Just tell me where and when works for you and I'll be there, coffee, keyboard, and the shiny new WIP. Like a predawn writing boot camp thing?

Yep...I'll be there.

Anytime.

I'm ready.

Sitting here, with my butt glue, long enough for the magic to start to flow.

Any minute now...

What? You're calling me a procrastinator?? Me? But, but...

*hangs head* It's true.

What is it with me and a new book? Why does it seem like it's such an ordeal to get the momentum going, like an old lady trying to hoist her aging frame from a too deep recliner. Rocking back and forth, back and forth, back and...oh, up, almost, almost standing...and we're back down again. Forget pulling, the first few chapters feel like growing new teeth.

And still, I feel it coming.

You know, that time, place and space when you keep coming back to the story. Involuntarily. You'll daydream about it, start taking spontaneous notes about it. The skeleton of an outline you constructed months ago finally begins to sprout tendons and blood vessels.

Wooden puppet characters are becoming real boys.

Until, one day, all this thinking and spinning and changing and noting taking culminates in an energy urgency. "I must write this scene now!" And it has to be now because the fear it will otherwise be lost is too great (like a half remembered dream that you can't ever catch.) And that one scene, before you know it, is bleeding and breathing life into the next and the next...you're on a roll again.

Suddenly it not so hard to remember that you used to crank out up to 2500 words a day. (never mind that lately it has been more like 25.)

I do wish it were different. And, honestly, I suspect it is different for authors who choose to (or are blessed enough to) just sit down in front of their computer and shut themselves off from the outside world long enough to get there faster. It's just not where I happen to be in my journey right now. Right now I still have to manage transitions between a writing and non-writing life.

I love to write, it's true. When it all pulls together. When I look at the screen and word after word has piled up--just right. The joy and satisfaction that brings me is tremendous.

But I happen to have other joys. Louder joys. Living joys that need me. And I need them.

So, again, working-mom-writer is again blogging about her never ending quest for balance between all worlds. We get there, we always do. A little here, a little there, back and forth, give, take, beg the kids for five more minutes.

I wouldn't change a thing.