CatchUp

Today is not my normal day for writing posts. In fact, nothing of late has gone according to any semblance of a routine. It is starting to wear on me. Routine is a comfort zone. One that I haven’t been in much of late.

Sounds bad doesn’t it? Well, not really. My comfort zone is expanding, so is my vision, and my awareness.

Growing up isn’t easy, not even in your fifties. Anyone who says they are all grown haven’t been around long enough or known anyone older.  They don’t understand that we are always growing. Every age/stage of life has different hurdles to overcome. We still have more to learn. Always, in a good way– if we choose it.

I made that choice, but sometimes, I forget. For a long while I lost my “PollyAnna” viewpoint, and I really missed it. I enjoyed looking for the good, finding things possible that wouldn’t have been otherwise if this or that hadn’t happened. It was my perspective, my choice. Then I changed it, and didn’t like it very much. I was not happy.

Right now, because I did find those rose-colored glasses to look at life with, my perspective has changed especially on the chaos of the moment. I see the opportunities again. Now, there are possibilities available to me, that I couldn’t begin to have seen otherwise. I realize the need to pause and put the breaks on, catchup.

In the moment, of catching up, I am also looking around to see what else is here that wasn’t before. That and a little nap to fortify my energy level. Naps are my best way to slow down, and catchup.

I don’t think I will ever grow too old to nap.

A Lot of Stagnating and A Little Stewing

It has been brought to my attention that stagnating is a phase. Often times it is not a phase anyone wants to be in, fall into, or are desperately trying to get out of; no one wants to stagnate. Yes, I am stagnating.

I was reminded how stagnating is not that bad of a place to land. What is frustrating to me about it is not knowing how long that phase is going to last; the fear of it being forever is the negative thought that overwhelms and prevents me from enjoying this phase.

Looking back over the times that in one way or the other I have stagnated, the only regret I hold in my heart are the lost opportunities to enjoy the moment. Sometimes I see how, if I had just paused and looked for things to cherish about that time, I probably would have moved on faster. Due to the fear, I ended up spending more time in that paused moment.

I like the analogy of a car stuck in mud, and the wheels spin. In desperation many times we end up getting the car stuck up to it’s axles just trying to get it out. When someone who’s been there and done that before steps back and looks at the situation. How is the best way to get that car out. Sometimes it requires help from someone that can pull you out. Sometimes, you need to dig a little deeper and place some material that will create traction. Then there are those rare times that the best thing to do is to just wait it out till the ground dries up and then the vehicle can be safely driven out and back up on solid ground.

Our stagnations in life work that way, too. Or they at least present themselves to me in that way. It is time I viewed my own stagnations in the same light. Not become frustrated and continually hit the gas hard.

Stewing, a bit of that too, there has been anxiety and agitation over getting started writing. I certainly don’t have all the answers and am quite certain I am not painting by the numbers according to the mass majority.

Though, like stagnating, I think there is some bubbling up of better, more. Tasty, slow cooking of even ideas has the potential to make more of something that rushed just doesn’t taste quite so good. Same goes for writing, in my opinion.

Study and exploration of infusing detail and style to concepts, leaves me with hope that what we both will be seeing in the later half of this year will be worth the wait.

Comfort Zones

One thing that writing has done for me is push me outside my comfort zones. For instance an illustrators class came on my horizon, so I took it. That experience helped me become more open to taking more art classes, just because it was fun.

That is the curious thing to me about pursuing an interest. Most people have a similar story about doing or trying something they were interested. Often finding themselves extended beyond just the initial interest. Meeting people one wouldn’t have met otherwise, is just one of the perks when trying something new. Sometimes you find a whole new outlet of creativity that wasn’t there before.

It reminds me of the Dr. Seuss book, Oh, The Places You will Go. That is one book, we never out grow.

Union

Writers are scavengers of life.

Plucking emotion from made up fantasies while dealing with reality.

Writers use words as a timewarp to manipulate and control destinies of their inner wants and needs.

Setting the dark gnarly worm of self destruction into a blossoming butterfly of freedom from the demon of the Id.

Compensation comes in the form of the devoted reader who scours every word for entertainment, enjoyment and meaning;

Finding more than what they were looking for.

Finding for themselves a sanctuary between the words and nestling in for keeps.

We delve within our slumber of reality and live among dreams, we —the writer and the reader.

A match entwined.

27 January 2016

Paths

It is one thing to be told, or tell others how to complete a big task. There are many ways to do that. One way is to power through, keep at it until it is done. Procrastinating, while generally not the best way, can sometimes prove prudent when the task depends on changing information, or when your skills and knowledge aren’t sufficient for to make an impact on the results.

Most people will agree, (I assume) that the best method is usually to break the task or project into small doable parts. For me, sometimes that isn’t so easy to figure out. It has taken me twice as long as I planned with the picture book.

✓ Procrastination
✓ Powering Through
✓ Breaking it down into smaller parts —currently ongoing

Each of these methods have proven to me that I tend to take on more than I am capable of completing in a timely matter according to my own expectations.

Had I continued to power through, resulted in a lower standard book, something I am not willing to do at this time. Snowball, took longer than I planned as well. A great analogy is someone’s eyes being bigger than their stomach. My expectation on how long it takes me to produce the best book I can at the current stage of knowledge and experience is generally three times longer than I want it to be.

That is a long time! Let that settle in your mind for a moment, because it still hasn’t settled in mine, exactly. Three years before I published Snowball.

That’s about fifteen years to complete my “contract” of a book for each grandchild, based on the current number of grandchildren. At the same time, I am trying to work on writing fiction for a little older crowd. That genre tends to take a back seat to the children projects. How all this will affect the projects in the future, is a mystery. Will I become faster, or is this the standard? An even more important question, does it matter?

This is my path to writing. It can’t be compared, no matter how enticing it is to do that myself, or allow others to do that to me. There is no way to compare my path to anyone else’s.

What is your path? How unique is it to you? Do you try to compare where you are headed and how you are getting there to others? Why?

You might not know all you need at once, you may not develop all the skills you need quickly. It isn’t about how fast, it is about traveling, at your pace. Enjoy the journey.