By the headline, can you guess who I’m listening to? Bobby Vinton, of course! You can listen to him here, if you’re feeling the arrival of fall and aren’t quite ready for it. (I’m not either!)
Unfortunately, recently Barry and I had to say goodbye to the dunes, at least for now, because of the cooler weather moving in. (Since we have a season pass I am tempted to campaign to return for my birthday, even if it will be November. I mean, the beach would still be beautiful, right?)
Knowing me and my extreme dislike of the cold (winter really effs me up, with its dreariness and my inability to get outside as much, though I do have a HappyLight I use when I need it), I doubt I would enjoy the beach in November. But maybe?
Below are pictures of our beachy selves and miscellany. I tend to pick up things along the beach and bring them home, but you can only fill so many jars with rocks, sea glass (lake glass?), and only litter so many window ledges with driftwood and shells. I’m trying to take pics instead nowadays, so here, let me share.
(I don’t think you can tell, but the footprint photo is of a tiny foot. The lone print reminded me of the footprint in Robinson Crusoe!)
Also, the sand castle was apparently from the day before, and I liked imagining the flurry of children who must have made it. I thought they would be pleased, if they knew, that someone paid it attention.
The beach, ah, the beach. It’s the one place I can be carefree. We read. Write. Take pictures. We swim. I watch Barry feed the gulls. We snack. I get some much-needed color. I walk. We observe people. I exercise. (Someday I will join the Sunday morning yoga class!)
We also mediate, as much as my monkey mind will allow me to meditate. There is barely any cell service, and I don’t bother with it at all because who needs it?
And, because we are beach regulars, we have also inevitably made (sort of) acquaintance with the other, regular, locals. The Kindles (Lisa and Rod who bring Kindles; that’s not their real last name), Joe and Grandpa, Lady with the Umbrellas, Sisters with the Chairs, the Paralegal, the huge family with the grill that produces such yummy scents that I want to ask to buy a plate of food from them, and so on, are the rotating cast of characters.
“See you next weekend?” they ask. Alas, too often the answer is no.
As much as I adore our current beach (in)activities, I want to buy a Freewrite so I can write on the beach, more than my by hand, more casual writing.
My dream is to live with the beach right outside my door. I would slather myself in sunblock, set up a standing desk about ten feet from the water under our cabana (with the option of taking it down when not needed), and just let the waters speak to me. I would take a break for lunch and get right back on it. Evenings would find us with drinks on the beach. (Yes, I’d love to live outdoors. I’m not even kidding. I so want to live in a treehouse by the beach — that makes no sense, but so?)
Now, the Freewrite (this is NOT a sponsored post, but I’d advertise the HELL out of it if they gave me one!), from what I understand, is made for first drafts, not revision, because it only displays a small portion of text at a time. But since I’ve often taken binder clipped manuscripts onto the beach with no mishaps, I could just print (sorry, my beloved trees) the first and subsequent drafts. (I already print drafts of my novels in progress periodically because there’s only so much I can do on a computer. And final revisions should ALWAYS be done with pen in hand.)
Maybe I should explain: a Freewrite is something between a typewriter and an old-school word processor. The beauty of it is that it allows you to write and save a draft of your work to upload to your computer later, but without the paper and ink hassle of typewriters (or the pounding noise), AND without the distraction of the internet. It’s purposely created without a cursor or arrow keys so you will write, ah, freely, without editing. (Though rumor has it that the Traveler has arrow keys!)
Here’s an article from 2016 on whether or not these things are “pretentious hipster nonsense” or not. Wow, have I been coveting one of these since 2016? (The Traveler sounds right up my alley — quieter, with more screen display, and it’s less expensive… see it below!)
And since I loathe pretension and am decidedly not hipster (is that still even a thing?), I’d say it is not merely (I know I am digressing, but I have to talk to someone about this besides my long-suffering spouse who would buy me one in a heartbeat but I keep telling him I know I would only use it at the beach and only for first drafts so what’s the sense? For pete’s sake, he could buy another guitar for the price of one. Not that I’m suggesting he should. He recently welcomed a sweet SG into his family of guitars. But he paid for it out of money he earned from band gigs. I got to buy whatever I wanted with my book advance, so that seems fair, doesn’t it?)
P.S. Mr. Drudge, upon hearing of this post, has thoughtfully provide me with a photo of his latest love. But his true guitar love, his Les Paul, has a nameplate with my name on it, so why would I feel threatened? Spoiler alert: I don’t.
So anyway…yes, like it or not, I am saying goodbye to summer. I wish I were a Pumpkin Spiced Latte and sweater enthusiast, but nope. I find sweaters necessary and sometimes cute but I hate heavy clothing. Am I the only one who hefts a piece of clothing before buying it? I’ve gotten rid of many a sweater or blouse because they’re “too heavy” after I’ve worn them.
Not to bury the lede, but here’s some writing news I’m thrilled to share: Victorine has been long listed for the 2021 GOETHE Book Awards for Post-1750s Historical Fiction. I’m thrilled! What an honor, being in the company of these fine writers, and I hope this helps Victorine Meurent, the artist, continue to regain her rightful place among painters.