Thursday, December 23, 2010

A reason to celebrate

A frenzy has descended on me these last few weeks.  I'm not even celebrating X-mas this year, not really, and yet I seem to have caught everyone else's insanity like a bad cold.  My poor multi-tasking skills have been put to the test.  The results of that test?  One big "F."

I thought a little trip to Powell's would calm my rattled nerves.  I love looping around the remainder shelves and the employee pic shelves and seeing what catches my eye.  Middle of the week, middle of the day, the place was swarming.  In among the bookshelves, the energy felt celebratory instead of crazy-making, at least to me.  Then, to my delight, I found myself in a long line that ran down the full length of the "E through O" fiction aisle.  I will always celebrate a long line at the bookstore.

I'm liking my new bedside book tower.  Sometimes a Great Notion from my own "been meaning to read" shelf, a collection of essays from the library, Salter's A Sport and a Pastime, Fernando Pessoa's The Book of Disquiet(my Powell's purchases) and Philip Lopate's selection of personal essays that I've been digging through for a while now.

I can't wait to hang the "closed" sign on my office door, curl up under a blanket with a nice glass of wine and slow everything down to the deliciously slow pace of words on the page.

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Ready to roll

Okay, so by "signing on" to the whole life reflection thing I mentioned in my last post, I really meant "fleetingly interested."  I've been getting the prompts every day but very quickly I realized that so much reflection felt stifling right now.  As I said, this whole year has felt like a pause.  There's been plenty of time in there for endless mulling.  I'm all mulled out.  The inertia has fallen away and the last thing I want to do is dwell on what I've been doing these last twelve months.

Now that the earth is soft from all the rain, it's time to stretch out on top of the grassy hill and roll, with messy, reckless wonder, until something brings me to a stop.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Reverb 10

Okay, for some reason, I've signed on for a month-long series of reflections prompted by the site Reverb 10.  I doubt I'll write every day on their suggested topic, but we'll see what happens.  Yesterday's prompt was to sum up the year in one word and reflect on what that word might be at this time in 2011.

For me, 2010 was one big PAUSE.  There was a pause in my writing life where I finished one project but struggled for much of the year towards something new.  There was a pause in my professional life, not outwardly, but internally as I wondered about how to keep my massage work interesting and viable long into the future.  Pausing is different than being stuck, though.  Pausing leaves time to absorb and replenish.  Now I feel ready.  In 2011 I can push PLAY.

Today's prompt asks "What do you do each day that doesn’t contribute to your writing — and can you eliminate it?"  I blame the sun when it's sunny (gotta get it while you can).  I blame the rain when it's rainy (who can work when it's so dark and cold?).  I blame my perpetually messy house and my piles of laundry, my slow computer, my random schedule, my sore elbow and tired eyes.    All this blame takes time and effort.  With so much finger wagging to do, I barely have time to work on my writing. 

So can I stop blaming the outside world for luring me away from my words?  I've already started to find a way to get past this.  My schedule now goes up on my computer desktop.  Writing time gets blocked off like any other kind of work.  If it feels uninviting, then so be it.  Going to the bank, grocery store and dentist are on the schedule too and I have no choice but to follow through.  My schedule says "Work on essay" for this hour, so off I go...