That Time of Year

Late June and July have historically been dry times for me creatively. It starts slowly. Word counts decrease as distractions creep in. We always have friends come to visit around the 4th of July, and it takes a fair amount of prep to get ready for them. Then there are garden chores, weeds to pull, grass to cut. There are Scottish festivals we attend to represent Clan Campbell. Let’s not forget the Bristol Ren Faire–we have to do that a few times in the short summer months. It’s hard to think past the activity and prep work long enough to concentrate on whatever book I’m working on.

I actually didn’t put it together until yesterday. I was stomping around, irritated because the trash hadn’t taken itself out. I felt generally put out and started thinking about what I need to do to get ready for our friends, and resentment started to creep in. That was the moment I realized I was cranky because I haven’t been getting words like I want to. I’ve been in and out of the garret for a couple weeks, and it’s starting to wear on me, but it seems futile to try to get back into the rhythm when I’m going to have someone sleeping in my office soon.

I’m not sure about the solution, but I know there needs to be one. In the future, I need to try to finish the draft du jour by mid-June so I can pick up after the summer dry spell with a fresh project. I might also need to find another creative outlet for a little while. The best part is guilt about not getting any writing done is conspicuously missing. Well, okay, not entirely. It bugs me a little, but I’m not beating myself up over it. I’m not going to meet my word count goal. There might not be a month-end report this month.

The world will still turn.

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All Shook Up

I know, I know, I’ve been scarce lately. Summers are crazy for everyone, but just when things settled down, lunch with a fellow writer shook them back up.We got on the subject of conferences and how neither of us is going to ACFW this year. I told her I’d considered going to the Oregon Christian Writers Conference because a friend of mine is the director, and the agent I want to pitch to will be there. However, I wanted the book to be done and spit polished before I pitch. She strongly encouraged me to go anyway, so when I got home I e-mailed one of the mentors at My Book Therapy who is familiar with the story. She told me to go, too. When I told Eric about it, he said, “Bye.” Yes. He is my hero. And my biggest fan.

It’s all been pretty surreal, but I did get separate confirmation. A couple days after I registered, I was going through the mail and casually mentioned to Eric that if I’m going to Oregon, I guess I better buy airline tickets. I mean, it’s only 2,000 miles one way. That’s when I found a check from my former boss. She’d gone over the books and found two paychecks I hadn’t cashed. It didn’t cover all of the airfare, but it made buying them a lot less painful!

Long story short, I’m working like a fiend to get everything ready. I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one seeing God’s fingerprints all over this!