Friday, August 22, 2014

To Everything a Season, To Everything a Purpose

I'm pretty sure the light in this picture is
God sending rays of love right onto my family.
How cool is that?

I've been on break for summer break. If you count summer break as a break. I did attempt around four posts, none of which made it to the blog. And if I'm totally honest, I also stopped writing, pretty much completely.

Instead I took a road trip to Idaho, where I managed to take the wrong way in the only two possible places to take the wrong way between Utah and Boise. (No, thank you, Pocatello, I will not be visiting you this summer.)

I spent a great afternoon with my aunt talking about family stories. Later, I read a story she wrote about my grandma and cried. How amazing, how alike our feelings and experiences can be, even through three generations.

I went hiking several times, and lost my cool homemade baby carrier somewhere near a river. If you found it, I hope it went to doing some good. I've been imagining someone being blessed by it somehow. ('Cause there's got to be a reason I'm so spacey sometimes. I mean other than genetics and not sleeping through the night for over a year.)

My baby got her first ear infections. For a month. I hate ear infections. She also went on a breastfeeding strike. She's over that. My son still hasn't learned to ride a bike without training wheels, but he can do the monkey bars like a true monkey.

I went to the library, to an evening of girls camp, and to writer's groups (even though I hadn't written anything.) I made things out of cardboard boxes and plastic containers, played in the sprinklers, did a lot of laundry and procrastinated a lot of dishes.

My in-laws came and we went swimming. And on a nature walk. We caught up with each other and did family history work. Some of my husband's lines go back to Adam. WHAT?

My son spent the last month with Lego's over his entire floor, and I didn't make him pick them up, not until his dad said he needed to, um, maybe last weekend because school was starting.

I sewed some pajamas for the kids using free fabric and my old t-shirts. I've struggled through grocery stores with my baby screaming and my son hiding like a ninja behind every display. I've gone on walks, been to parks, visited the new Bean Museum, the BYU Art Museum, had family reunions, and a girl's night at my mom's.

That scripture "To everything there is a season." often comes to my mind.

I stood in my kitchen listening to Micheal Buble singing someday he'll met that girl worth working for, Taylor Swift beginning again, and Adele setting fire to the rain.  My baby threw something from her high chair and the sink gurgled down the last of the dirty dishwater. I didn't have on any make-up and I'm sure my shirt was wet.

Suddenly I realized I had it. That thing people are looking for. The man worth working for, the love that lasts, the family I'll never have to let go. My dreams were sitting in a high-chair covered in soggy crackers, making Lego creations on the floor of his bedroom, and driving home to me from another day of work.

I'll just soak it up a little longer. God's love is shinning right down on these people He's given me.

"To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven."-Ecclesiastes 3:1

Friday, May 9, 2014

WIP: Writing Donuts and Other Guilty Pleasures Of An Author


Sometimes the pressure of writing for someone ELSE makes writing loose it shine.
Last week I spent many glorious hours writing junk.

I'm serious. No one must ever see the majority of what I wrote.

Ah, but that was fun.

Like eating donuts even though I know they are bad for me.

This week, I've been telling myself to get back to the real writing. Like the stuff I have to send to my critique group in just a week or so.
Instead, I read all the wonderfully fun junk I've written in that book.

Maybe I should have edited while I was reading. Or something. Oh, and then I told myself to find out the real truth about all those medical issues I happily wrote junk about.

I'm so good at making up stuff! It doesn't even have to be true!

But researching is fun, too.

But not as fun as finding photos of things from your book. Like the characters. And the character's doing what they love. And what the character would look like starved on a deserted island vs when they return and put on a little weight. Or if they were, hypothetically speaking, to be filmed in a movie. (Can I cast Meryl Streep and Dakota Fanning in my next novel, please?)

Then when you have files of photos, and lists of all the terrible true things that happen to persons who have said medical issues, then you feel obligated to make files with titles. Something like: Character Sketches, Story Outline,  Medical Information, Magic System, 2nd Story Outline, Pictures to Use In Other Book, Pictures to Make a Book About, Medical Issues to Use Later, and my ever favorite Snippets, which happens to be bits of everything I take out of my book because it's junk, and I won't let anyone see it, but I spent so much time writing it in oblivious enjoyment, I can't bare to part with it.

So the truth is, when something is hard, sometimes you need a donut. And you don't eat the donuts necessarily because you don't like salads (I've had some really good salads.) The truth is whole wheat pancakes make you really happy, and you love all those fresh fruits coming back in season. So you aren't entirely giving yourself over to ruin and gluttony.

You're just enjoying the donuts. And sometimes we need donuts. Because they are good.  And because they remind you to stop being so crazy about being perfect all the time. And also because they remind you that while good, a donut isn't going to get you were you need to be.

So you do the serious stuff again. And you like that too, because you realize you just really like food.

And writing.

Which is good.

Because you need a little bit every day.