There was a big gap in my blogging in 2017. I wrote a post and published it on October 11 and then didn’t post again for the rest of the year.
When I’m away from the blog for a while, I’m never able to immediately create a post the day I return. I always need to start by reacquainting myself with the terrain – the computer, the typing, the subjects and topics that have accumulated in my head during my (usually unintended) leave of absence.
I’ve spent the past week doing just that – sifting through the thoughts I drafted two months ago, scribbling notes about what’s been happening in my life during November and December 2017, and crafting new thoughts for the new year.
Here’s a snapshot of the last two months of my life:
-I attempted a NaNoWriMo challenge – writing a 50,000 word novel in 30 days – during November 2017. I stuck with it for the first half of the month, and then got busy and distracted and did not complete the challenge. I’ve attempted NaNoWriMo at least three times, and I’ve never finished it. I think this says something about my work habits, my writing style. I don’t feel bad about it. At all.
My attempt to achieve NaNoWriMo is part of why I’ve been absent from blogging. I don’t regret doing it – I stuck with it for about two weeks, and I produced a lot of solid content – but I do think my soul suffers when I’m away from the blog for too long. It’s my release valve; without it, everything gets all jammed up.
-Tee and I have been blissfully reading Louise Penny’s mystery novels, all featuring a wonderful main character named Chief Inspector Gamache. I first heard about the books in an interview Hillary Rodham Clinton did on one of my favorite podcasts, Call Your Girlfriend, so I like to think of these books as part of a book club that HRC started without knowing it. There are 13 books in the series (so far), and I just finished reading the tenth book, The Long Way Home. Now, I am distracting myself with other books, because Tee is a book behind me (she’s currently reading #9) and I am going to BURST if I can’t talk to her about #9 and #10 ASAP!
-Last night, I attended a writing group at my local library for the first time. It was great, and I hope I go back. I’m eager to find a community of writers with whom I can talk and share and connect.
-One of my biggest goals for 2018 is to let go of “what-do-I-do-with-my-work-life” angst and embrace my writing. I have a flexible, semi-low-stress job that allows me to daydream about stories during my endless driving time and actually write during my off time.
I’ve been struggling with the question of what I really want to be when I grow up for months now. Recently Jon Favreau (of Pod Save America, another of my favorite podcasts) shared some advice, paraphrased here: There are people who want to be someone and there are people who want to do something, and you should always strive to be the latter. I want to write, and I want to become good at writing. I’d rather end my life thinking “I was a good writer” than end my life thinking “I published a bunch of stuff that I don’t think is good.” The second part’s not in my control, anyway.
More to come!