*The title’s pun is explained below. Sorry, Led Z.
First of all, my apologies for my absence. I’ve been writing blog posts in my head but I can’t seem to get those to transfer over from brain to screen for some reason. Hmmm…🤓
I had (have) a helpful post in my mental cue, ready to go. It was all about giving up unhealthy habits. But then…
Before I explain, let me say that I would have written this yesterday except I was happily helping a certain Someone celebrate his birthday. (Blatant excuse to use adorbs pic of my DH.)
He wisely asked to go to Sweetwater to look at (and ultimately purchase) guitars before lunch. Being a certified chow hound, there’s not a whole lot I won’t do if there’s the promise of lunch after. If you feed me beforehand, I’ll be too “tired” to go.
While I could almost live at Sweetwater (It’s uh-mazing! Shiny instruments, eco friendly in ways I’ve never heard of, field stone decorated everything, the friendliest, most helpful staff I’ve ever met, and free candy and video games!), after a few hours I’m ready to leave while someone’s only getting started.
And yes, lunch, when we finally got around to it, was delish. Did you know Smokey Bones now offers lettuce wrapped burgers for the carb conscious consumer? Holla!
All of that to explain why I’m just now writing this post!
As far as writing goes, I’m in this unenviable place where I’ve polished my rough draft to the point where I will trust my first beta reader to look at it. (Read: long-suffering-yet-gifted husband.) But the draft isn’t ready for my other sweet, willing betas. (Mainly because I’m experimenting with form and I’m hoping it works but I can’t be sure without feedback.)
While I feel aimless and strange without a novel to work on, it’s also allowing me to work on other projects. Like painting a cabinet I rescued from the curb.
Getting the “naughty” words off the otherwise gorgeous wood of another curbside find has been another project. (Hint: toothpaste. Yup, that’s all it took.) When someone asked what I was doing with toothpaste I said truthfully I was getting the f@ck off my table. 😋
We won’t talk about all of the furniture I put out on the curb during Spring Cleanup myself that, thankfully, was quickly snatched up. You wouldn’t think I’d adopt more.
Before you call me a hoarder (I’m actually the opposite), at least I knew just where the new finds would go before I brought them inside. That’s a key difference.
I’ve also been cooking. Probably too much. The grocery store just happened to have a gorgeous pork loin for sale. And I bought all eight pounds of it! Between that and other beefy projects our freezer is well stocked for when I succumb to the writing bug again.
(In my defense, Indiana has the best pork.)
Sure, I could write. I have a few strong contenders for Next Novel, but I haven’t wanted to commit yet. I’ve made a few notes, even jotted down a really loose summary of one, but up until a few days ago, I hadn’t chosen.
Sometimes you don’t get to choose.
I had a vivid dream the other night I couldn’t figure out. I’m usually pretty good about detecting what my subconscious is trying to explain/complain about when I dream. This dream incorporated people I know, but I understood in it that they were only symbols.
Symbols. My new girl was talking to me. Gotta say, she kinda hooked me with that dream.
So I began to accept that maybe this character who I thought I had put in the “maybe” pile might be a front runner. Then.
Then I was taking a walk. Sure, I often think about writing when I walk, but this evening I was enjoying the violets, the scented, leaved trees. The sound of a bat connecting with a ball. I was marveling at how I can walk the same route and see something new every time. And I was cherishing the beauty of our small town.
This character clearly did not enjoy my reverie, because she yelled “Write this down.” Which, of course, gave me (literally) pause.
This timid, shy character, one I thought might for once not give me as much spirited grief as my other two MC’s started talking.
She told me the book’s title, and its opening words. I sighed because they worked. And because it meant she is spunky. I can’t resist writing spunky characters.
Then she told me her nickname growing up, and I fell in love with her. Try to keep me from writing about her now.
“Of course I’ll write your story,” I said. “Just don’t shout at me again. Ever.” She will. They all do when I get something wrong.
To show her who’s boss, I didn’t write any of it down, either. Until I got home.
I am working eagerly on some ancillary writing/design projects, so unless she insists I don’t plan to dive in for a few more months. If you want to make bets, go ahead. Not even I believe I’ll be able to stay away from her that long.
My second novel will (maybe) be far enough along in the revision process that by fall I’ll be ready to listen to her. 🤞🏻
Wait, who’s that kicking her heels against the back of my car seat?
Fall, ‘Lotta. You gotta wait until fall.
If she wrestles control of my writing hand before September, I’ll let you know. In the meantime, it’s back to all of my intruiging and challenging projects — More on them as they develop. They’ve been so much fun that I can’t wait to share.
(One more gratuitous pic of the birthday dude.)