The amount of psychic energy required to finish my manuscript and begin the querying process was substantial but also invisible. It really tanked my cloth and collage work. I kept thinking something was wrong, but nothing’s wrong.
Spring brings with it a rising energy. This year I plan to ride that wave with attention to finishing. Finish. Finish. Finish.
Oh, and I plan on starting things too. I’m seesawing between two possible topics for a new novel. Many pages already written. I’m pretty sure it’s gonna be contemporary. Enough with parlors and drays, small pox and reticules. You won’t hear a specific thing about it til it’s done this time (she said).
I’ve become a ridiculous puzzle hound. Jigsaw puzzles. Wordle AND quordle. Daily NYTimes crossword puzzle and Spelling Bee. Every day!
Enough. I’ll be spending a lot more time outdoors.
The last word changed and the last period input — the edits from my professional consultant are done. It happened on my birthday and it felt momentous and like a gift to myself.
Now I have to read through again to catch edits I missed in the first go-through. I may set up another computer screen to ease my eyes.
Also, I plan to read through the deleted chapters with a view to possibly capturing a phrase or a few paragraphs here and there. It’s not a tortuous process, meaning I’m prepared to let it all go. It’s more like sifting through sand and hoping to find a small gem, a little bit exciting.
I had a great birthday! All kinds of cards and phone calls and packages made it a special. I have great friends, good boys, and sweet in-laws. My husband went so overboard at Christmas, I let him off the hook for my bday and for Valentine’s too.
This conversation, nearly verbatim, happens to an embarrassing degree in our house. I’m not sure whether it speaks more to being married for more than thirty years or to being over-reliant on our devices.
It was really too hot to be poking around scrub land behind retail space in search of sumac, but there we were. Finn’s tags fell off somewhere along the way this week necessitating a trip to Pet Co. We left the dog home and brought along gloves, spade, and two empty containers.
My mother was famous for plant-grabbing. She’d drive up into the woods behind our house in Pittsfield as far as the road would go, and fill the trunk with small trees which eventually, of course, became big trees. My brother claims she got permission from the landowner. I’m not so sure.
I’d seen her pull over on Route 43 or Dalton Road and dig up what to any other eye might appear to be a weed, perhaps with a spoon that she happened to have in the glove box. A little savage. Let’s just say she was a resourceful opportunist with a very good eye. This being her birth week, I figured why not honor her with my own sly acquisitions?
Last weekend, we more legitimately came by a clethra and a yew. These are all for the fence line along the back edge of the property. I also had to buy and plant two flats of pachysandra which the workers stomped to extinction on my neighbor’s property. Part of the price of our new fence.
And speaking of that neighbor. The son has come home with his girlfriend to live and turns out, the girlfriend is interested in learning how to quilt. Would I want a student? I almost said no, but I’m already thinking what I’d bring to a casual show and tell for a first lesson. And if the main reason I don’t want to proceed is because I can’t think what to charge a recent college grad with no job, then is that really a reason?
I sent my neighbor away with a few books and gave her Jude’s blog’s name. Ruth McDowell’s too. The young woman is an engineer so it occurred to me that McDowell’s precise piecing method may appeal to her. That’s a place to start, answering the question: What are you drawn to?
Meanwhile, I finished this with a little help from my friends (speaking of Jude, also Maggie and Jenn) (mostly re: a disappearing head. I think I fixed it!)
I could spend the rest of my life, even a long life, organizing my studio and finishing incomplete work.
Started sorting this morning and made give away piles, maybe-sell piles, village-quilt-teeny-geometric piles, and found many, many quilts half done. Also a few all the way done.
(I was in the basement because of tree work over at the school. The noise level is fairly tolerable now but just wait until they start grinding branches).
The problem with a space that affords potentially endless and productive activity is that it can serve as a sneaky tool of avoidance. You’d think my laptop was covered in cactus spines or snot the way I’m avoiding it.
So, in the school of Find the Thing You Can Say Yes To (Even If it’s Ridiculously Small) I found something I can say yes to: go through and make sure chapter headings match my table of contents. Bye!
A morning where the shoe doesn’t slide on, the electric cord doesn’t behave, ideas about the future won’t hold.
I walked to the dentist. The clouds enchanted me. The wind blew cold but we don’t really have winter around here anymore. It’s disorienting.
During various stages of lockdown, I got spoiled by calendar-months free of appointments. Now I have to catch up: mammogram, annual, endocrine check, another dentist visit, cardiologist.
Groceries came close to midnight last night. My bad. I expected them at noon. But that’s not all — onions that I bought by the piece last time were softball-sized, while this time they’re smaller than baseballs. The last time I ordered a sleeve of garlic, five heads arrived, neat as buttons in a mesh bag. This time: three. It’s hard not to wonder how much of the size-fuckery is intentional on corporate America’s part (and not, ah-hem, a function of ADD).
The silhouettes quilt is finished except for a sleeve on the back.