Writing life: July wordage, still-stubborn Muse, and not enough time

"The problem is . . . how to remain whole in the midst of the distractions of life; how to remain balanced, no matter what centrifugal forces tend to pull one off center; how to remain strong, no matter what shocks come in at the periphery and tend to crack the hub of the wheel.

"What is the answer? There is no easy answer, no complete answer. I have only clues, shells from the sea. The bare beauty of the channelled whelk tells me that one answer, and perhaps a first step, is in simplification of life, in cutting out some of the distractions. But how? Total retirement is not possible. I cannot shed my responsibilities. I cannot permanently inhabit a desert island. I cannot be a nun in the midst of family life. I would not want to be. The solution for me, surely, is neither in total renunciation of the world, nor in total acceptance of it. I must find a balance somewhere, or an alternating of the pendulum between solitude and communion, between retreat and return. In my periods of retreat, perhaps I can learn something to carry back into my worldly life."

--Anne Morrow Lindbergh: "Gift from the Sea."


(I wrote this post last weekend but didn't post it then because of the tragedy in Charlottesville.)


You haven't heard from me recently because my life has been jam-packed. I've been decluttering, catching up on housework, running errands, exercising, writing, editing, laying out, getting ready to launch a new business this month, starting a new blog, and helping Joe through his third surgery in a year. In other words, the same old schedule.

(Joe's surgery went fine. He had lesions removed that proved to be benign. And yes, he has dropped the slash in his name, except for when signing his professional work as an artist.)

Wordage was relatively low in July as a result of all of the above - which is to say, July's word count was a lot higher than it would have been during most months in recent years. I came close to meeting my 20,000-word monthly goal.

My Muse continues to stubbornly feed me "Search for the Jackal," a novel that I can't publish (because of spoilers) till I've published three previous novels set in the Three Lands. Stupid Muse. In an effort to encourage my Muse to work on my current Three Lands novel, I've started proofreading Death Mask. This is one of the many Three Lands novels that I started back in 1995; I've lightly edited it so often now that I'm turning up very few problems in the proofreading. All I need are those missing scenes, darn it.

Meanwhile, I'm frantic to start the final stretch of editing Sweet Blood 5: Truth and Trust. I have an ironclad deadline of end of August for that novel, if I'm to meet a literary contest deadline.

Not much more to say than that. I've really been trying to focus on the launch of my historical research business, which was originally supposed to be launched in January. It's a tad bit overdue.

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