Emotions are a writer’s best friend

Karalee’s Post #109

Lately I feel pulled and stretched in many directions. This year has started off at a sprint and not slowed down.

It’s good really. Fourteen years ago I left private practice when I sold my physiotherapy clinic. At that time my youngest was five years old and I’ve dedicated my time and energy since in raising my three children.

The experience has been amazing, but the baton has been passed and all three are now legally adults. Now it is me time.

Except my daughter is getting married this summer.

Except my middle son is graduating from university.

I want to celebrate all these special times with the family, continue to write, and oh, did I mention I’ve decided to join with a company and start a home-based business? I never thought I would go back into business of any kind. I’ve been pulled in that direction though because I believe in the product and I have a strong need to stretch beyond my office and computer, and the house and garden, and MEET NEW PEOPLE. Even if they are my neighbors down the street or around the block or anywhere in the city or where I travel!

Writing can be lonely. My writing group has spread out across the continent. My children are grown.

I can start anew, try new stuff.

Sometimes new stuff is still at home learning new technologies such as digitizing photos and sorting and saving thousands of them. I’m doing this to preserve our family photographs in a form that the family can look at them and share them. Of course the wedding and graduation have spurred me to take on this vast task.

The photos themselves have brought back memories and emotions. I’m utterly surprised at the compressed timeline of the five of us growing and changing together. All aspects have shifted, from clothing styles, hair styles, cars, furniture, and the city view of Vancouver and other places we have traveled to.

img567Then there are relationship changes between mother and baby, brothers and sister, grandparents, parents and teenagers, and everything in-between.

There’s people that I’d forgotten about, relatives and friends that are no longer with us.

Lots of smiles. Lots of tears.

Family gatherings.img489

It’s been an emotional trip for me and I’ve scanned less than half of the photographs we’ve had stored away for decades. Memories can be powerful, bringing the past right back to the present.

Photos can be frustrating too, when I don’t remember the event even happening, but the proof is right there. Undeniable!

I’ve started to worry that something horrible like dementia is creeping in!

Emotions though, are writer’s best friend.

Experiencing deep emotions like sadness, joy, fear, anxiety, worry, etc. can do nothing BUT enhance the depth of one’s writing.

Do you agree?

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Writing Progress: More business writing lately with my new venture. I’ve got on top of it, so can get back to fiction writing too.

Books I’m reading: lots of procedural stuff with my new business.

Treats eaten: Pumpkin pie slices (many) over the Easter holiday. Technically pumpkin is good for you. So is cinnamon.

Perspective Photos:

between houses

 

 

 

 

 

 

bridge

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happy writing!

Juggling all the Jingle Balls

Maui Jingle ball

Paula’s Post #15 – When we started out on this journey on September 5th, 2012, I never would have imagined that I would draw December 25th, 2012, – Christmas Day, – for my weekly blog post. Nor would I have imagined that I would spend this evening, Christmas Eve, pounding out this little post on my Mac, while It’s a Vey Merry Muppet’s Christmas Movie rolled in the background, entertaining one very special two-year old, my little baby grand-daughter.

But then again, life doesn’t always turn out quite how we expect, and our stories shouldn’t either.

Last week, Joe posted that he had completed the first draft of his novel. Joe posted that he was now going to take a couple of weeks off, enjoy Christmas, and worry about the rewrites in January. Joe posted he had 360 pages.

In the vault.

Done.

By last week, I had maybe a third of Joe’s output. Somewhere around 130 pages. I wrote a little comment on Joe’s post, something about being green with envy, (coincidentally, the same colour of the star of tonight’s little dramatic production, one Kermit the Frog).

Muppets

Joe’s post just brought home to me what I already knew: I’m playing ‘catch up’ and will be doing so until the end of this crazy journey. My goal not a polished third draft but a ragged, race-to-the-finish first draft.

I suspect I may not be alone in surging forward towards this more modest goal.

I suspect that, like many others, my schedule for this Christmas season will be unpredictable, just as it’s been for most of this 5writers journey.

My life’s just like that, and Christmas is no exception.

Christmas in our world is the most hectic time of all. Maybe your family is like mine: a blended family with kids and grandkids all over Canada and North America. Arranging Christmas is like playing poker and where the chips fall is just luck of the draw. This year, we drew into a Royal Flush. We have the joy of sharing the week before and the week after Christmas with two of our three baby grandchildren.

Two weeks of toddlers, 24/7, as the saying goes.

Hardly conducive to writing, with most of each day dictated by the play time, meal time and nap time of toddlers (which is pretty much all of the time, or so I’m discovering in my own, naive, ‘straight-to-grandchildren’ kind of way).

So my writing time this Christmas will be confined to a few stolen moments. I’ll be juggling all the Jingle Balls just to find the time to whip off a page or two each day. I’m trying to write at night, but most nights, I find myself nodding off at the keyboard, after just a few minutes. (A special salute to all the young mothers and fathers out there who somehow manage to raise children and pursue a writing career at the same time).

This week, unlike Joe, I’m posting that I’ve NOT completed the first draft of my novel.

But like Joe, I’m also happy to report that I am (mostly) taking a couple of weeks off to enjoy Christmas with my family. I’ll worry about the ‘and then what happened’ in the New Year, when the kids and grandkids have all gone home and it’s quiet again.

Joe’s right.

Spending time with family and friends over the holidays is more important than writing, even if the clock is ticking on this 5writers challenge. Just my opinion, but I feel that if you don’t think that way too, then maybe writing isn’t the best career choice for you. But that’s up to you to decide.

Right now, I have to cut this post short. Nana has cookies and milk to put out for Santa, and some carrots,, broccoli and pineapple (don’t ask) for Santa’s reindeer. I’m feeling pretty peaceful tonight, the tragic headlines of the last few weeks, the turmoil in the Middle East and the uncertainties of the ‘fiscal cliff’ seem very, very far away this evening.

I’m thankful for that.

I wish all a joyous holiday season and a very, very Happy New Year. I’ll check back with you then, since I’m pretty sure my next post day falls on New Year’s Day.

PS – The ‘reveal’ this week:

Words Written to Date: 42,665

Target Word Count: 100,000

Words short of Target: 57,335

Pages Written to Date: 153

Target Page Count: 400

Pages Short of Target: 247

Pie’s eaten (and to be eaten) this week – Many. I hope 🙂