48 days, day 39-40: a welcoming

{{ I am chronicling 48 days of writing before my July 31 travel. If you are chronicling your summer writing/days and would like to share, please link or comment so we can all cheer one another through. Strength to your sword arm!}}

The Year of Exploration is here.
On Being a Late Bloomer is here.
My speech at Vermont College (moments, memories, meaning) is here.

Ha! The joke is on me. I have two manuscripts, here in my enormous trove, that are finished, that are revised multiple times for different editors (editors I no longer work with and who have changed houses as well), that went to committee at two different publishing houses more than ten years ago, that still seem (to me) relevant (even more so!), and that I now understand, as I read through the many editorial letters and scratches on manuscript pages, what the heck they were talking about 15 years ago. I just couldn't see it then.

Why aren't I working on these?

So that's what I've been up to, yesterday and today, days 39 and 40. It took me over a month to realize that I've got two amazing stories sitting right here, complete stories, with notes from two fanastic editors all over them, with editorial letters suggesting changes, asking questions, championing me from a far-away desk in a long-ago time, but still -- there it is. The stuff of story-making.

What was I waiting for?

I think I needed the way to clear, the dust to settle, the noise to stop, the heavy (emotional) lifting to quiet, the movement to cease, the push-to-publication to give up and allow me to find what feeds me. I thought it was going to be some sort of rhythm or discipline or focus or habit or hours of having my head down and plowing through, creating brand-new. It's none of those things.

Instead, it's a welcoming. 

40 days in, I see that I needed the do-the-work train to come into the station and empty itself out. I don't have to push so hard. These two stories came twinkling down the steps -- they've been in plain sight all along, waving out the window -- as my engine stops gunning and quells the I have to get this done; I have to make this up; I have to find my way; I have to hurry;  I have to do do do do do from scratch; oh why can't I do it better and more and more, hurry up, there are only X days left.

I love these two stories so much.

Let it be about the work you love. 
Squash growing in the back yard where a maple tree (split by lightning) used to be. There are suddenly so many ladybugs on it! I like to think they are doing the work they love... or at least that they aren't trying so hard, they're just doing what they do...
We've been trying to identify this plant that has suddenly shown up. Guesses (on FB and IG) have been the obvious (ha!), hemp, castor bean, buckeye, and names I can't pronounce. We'll keep watching it. It's the only plant like this in the yard, a volunteer, and it is happy here. I think it got off some train...
A surprise present from my kids! An Appalachain pack basket, hand made, with I hope lots of love. It surely seems that way.

All the drains are working! We want to move water along on the property, not let it sit, so we've got drains installed that lead to the creek, but we also want to sink some water and let it recharge the ground. This will eventually be a little frog pond. We already hear the frogs at night and see dragonflies hovering nearby. Lovin' it.
flowing into the creek.... water doin' its thing...
doesn't look like much now, but this is a low point in the yard that we'll turn into a second small pond or wetland. we're listening to the land and doing what it asks us to do... doing what it loves. Okay, enough making a point! Off to do what I love.


  1. I love the "listening to the land" and the work and doing what it asks us to do! Looks like you are finding your way!

    I wrote out a simple PB this morning that haunted me in the night. On potatoes of all things - I think I have gardens on the brain. Not sure what to do now but was fun to write. Happy Mid July writing!

    1. Thanks, Joanne. I've never had this stretch of time without a deadline (and without travel) at home to "play." It's revelatory. A PB about potatoes! Happy writing to you, too!

  2. "Twinkling down the steps..." I love that line. Love your basket, too. It's all about love.

    1. "It's all about love." Ain't that the truth. xo

  3. It may end up posting twice, but, it's also worth saying again, in case the first post gets lost in the cyber ether:

    I love that the stories were there all along, like the Bunny Planet, and I needed the reminder not to push, as much as I might be tempted to.

    1. Oh how I love the Bunny Planet. I need to read those little books again. Thanks, Kathy. (Or is it Janet?) xo


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