Once again I am searching the ground, digging my hands in the dirt and savoring pulling weeds and discovering the delights beneath them.
Last spring, I did a post, Weeding, and have reposted it below, complete with photographs of the 2010 spouting daylilies. This year the daylilies are coming up a good two weeks earlier.
Blogs are great for letting us see where we’ve been. The novel that I committed to last spring continues to grow, even if a lot slower than I wish. Nothing ever does come along as fast as I wish. Perhaps that speaks mostly of my impatient nature, and reminds me of that proverb attributed to some wise Chinese fellow: Be not afraid of growing slowly, be afraid only of standing still.
However slowly, my daylilies are coming up more abundantly, and in the past year I have succeeded in writing some solid sixty pages, know my characters, have a clear story and partial synopsis in place. Mostly I have stuck with it, and with joy. I have succeeded in forming the writing habit each morning. Sometimes only a few minutes, sometimes an hour, sometimes three whole precious hours. And now, too, others accept that this time is mine for writing.
I’m also learning to write when I can grab a few minutes and an idea is tugging at me. You should have seen me today, working on a scene before 7am, going down to greet the two grands when they arrived, waving grandson off to school, getting our granddaughter off with Papa to get the newspaper, sprinting upstairs to finish my thoughts on a scene for another fifteen minutes, before hearing Papa’s plaintive voice from the downstairs bathroom: “Oh, there’s poopy in your pants.” So back downstairs Nana went.
I offer the following previously posted on March 7, 2010. It reminds me that yes, commitment grows.~
Last year’s post is a good reminder to me of my commitment to writing. Life can erode that. I now have three good solid chapters and know where I am going with this thing.
Weeding is one of the most sensual and pleasurable pursuits. Knees on the moist earth, warm sun on my back, I make order in my garden, and in my mind. There is nothing like weeding for stimulating thought.
Many gardeners will agree that hand-weeding is not the terrible drudgery that it is often made out to be. Some people find in it a kind of soothing monotony. It leaves their minds free to develop the plot for their next novel or to perfect the brilliant repartee with which they should have encountered a relative’s latest example of unreasonableness. ~Christopher Lloyd
Last week, I turned down the offer of a contract to write a novella. It is the first time ever that I turned down a contract. And it is the oddest thing, but my decision somehow energized me and thrust me headlong into firm commitment to the new novel I have been working on.
Some people think that it is publishing that makes you a writer. I have discovered that it is the level of commitment to the work that makes a writer.
I am committed to my writing in a way that I have not been in a long time. I am writing it to enjoy the process and for a personal challenge of learning and growing. I truly am back at the beginning, where I started. It feels good, like the dirt in which I dig my fingers.
I am committed to the gardens, too. I’ve been more or less getting drunk on gardening books and perusing plants at the nursery, and going out each day to look around the yard.
I think I am committed to my life in a way I never was before. Does commitment grow, like weeds?
I am rising early and writing on the novel an hour or two before the house explodes with activity and demands. It doesn’t seem like much– one hour. But I get one or two pages done, or redone, and that is more than none. I feed my Writer, and that feeds all parts of me.
The only way for a woman, as for a man, to find herself, to know herself as a person, is by creative work of her own. There is no other way. ~Betty Friedan
There are so many sides to me: the Writer, the Mother-Nurturer, the Gardener, the Finder-of-All-Lost-Things. Men writers are writers. Women writers balance the world.
So do I.
Enjoy your weeding this spring…