My husband and I are planning a trip to Colorado. I’ve never been there; he goes every winter to Steamboat Springs for skiing. We are hoping to go in a few weeks and planning to have dinner one night with a group of his friends. ‘We’re so anxious to finally meet Carolyn’, one of them wrote. ‘Your wife, the writer.’
I am a writer, I really am, but sometimes I feel like a fraud when I’ve not actually WRITTEN for several days. A real writer wouldn’t let real life interfere, would he or she? Mine does, all the time. Interfere, I mean. Real life is like that.
This past two weeks, I’ve been especially aware of the collisions between my writing life and my real life. Camp Meeting is going on, just down the road. Camp Meeting, that coming-together place of religious faith and family relationships, on which I want to base my next book. I wanted to be able to spend a great deal of time there, this year, to suck up all the inspiration I could, to drink in the sights and sounds. I only half-accomplished that, because of two things. One—real life, and the real responsibilities that go with it, and Two—the doggone heat. Up to 100 degrees several days in a row and, I’m sorry, I just can’t deal with that. And it’s a wet heat, too.
I did manage to squeeze in some real writing and some writerly activities that give me a good zap in the arm. I attended the Lake Norman Writers Meet-Up in Mooresville which meets on the first Saturday of each month, and there met Eric Swett, a new member and the author of a novel-in-progress, Alone, which is available to read through his website. Eric is also a blogger with some really good advice about book blogging, so it was great to get to know him and I’m enjoying reading Alone. You can visit his website here: http://ericswett.wordpress.com/
Another writerly thing I managed to do was design a storyboard for my own novel-in-progress, Two Weeks Every Summer, which is the book about Camp Meeting. I plan to have the story cover the exact timeline of the fourteen days of Camp Meeting plus a day before and a day after, so I’ve made a storyboard to help me keep track of what event happens when. I also cleaned my desk, a big feat in itself. Here’s what it (temporarily) looks like. My laptop, on which I write, is on a separate rolling table to the right. The yellow Post-Its have notes about the scheduled events of Camp Meeting, plus notes on the characters activities. I’m only up to Chapter Three, so I expect a lot more notes as I go along.
My youngest daughter is also a writer, non-fiction, who writes a very successful fashion blog. She has received a lot of attention in that community, from readers, other writers, and various fashion businesses. She is also in a graduate writing program and I get to proofread her papers. She’s been inspiring me a lot. It’s exciting to see her grow as a writer and I’m not a bit jealous of the number of hits her blog gets compared to mine. Seriously, I’m not. Okay, I am. Just a tad. But very proud of her.
Among the non-writerly activities going on this week, I’ve attended my oldest daughter’s graduation from an MBA program (go, Jo!), welcomed my son back home for his final semester of college. I have, for the last few days, enjoyed the company of a sister who lives out of state, and spent time with another sister who’s recovering from surgery. I’ve played with the dog and gone out on our boat. So, I can’t complain, not at all. But THIS week, coming up, I sure hope to find time to write, and to be a writer.
Here’s a couple of photos of Camp Meeting, just to whet your appetite.