Writing Like You Mean It

I recently went to a brief writing retreat at a cabin reserved for writers near the Finger Lakes. It was, to put it mildly, remote. But the windows offered a lovely view of a lot of rain on leaves that were turning color. The rain is probably what kept me writing. No temptation to go outside. It’s funny how negatives help you. No TV, no problem. Sure, you say, you can stream on your computer. Not with spotty Internet you can’t. And my sweet husband left the cozy cabin every morning for nearly the entire day so I could focus.

And I focused. I wrote 11,683 words that weekend. And I think most of them are grammatically correct and in pleasing sentences for someone to read. Or not. I’m almost afraid to look at them. In fact, when I picked it back up, I read the last thing I wrote and just went forward from there. Yes. I just moved on. Didn’t even reread what I had read. Sort of the NaNoWriMo state of mind, only without all of those other rules.

Anyway, I had written myself over a hump and into a corner. Good thing the weekend ended at that point because I had no idea what was going to happen next. Which might be good because the reader will hopefully wonder as well. For now, I am shuffling out of the corner carefully. I know it will all be changed when I revise, because everyone knows that first drafts are all rubbish. I have to get from the place I am now to the end I know. I’m not sure what happens between here and there, but it will come to me as I sit down and start to type.

I’m writing like I mean it. I’m serious about it. I’m sitting down and only looking up things if they are research for something in the manuscript. I take short pre-planned breaks to check email and social media, but mostly when I’m writing, I’m writing.

If you’ve taken on the NaNo… good luck to you. If you’re writing a novel on your own, cheers! If you’re writing poetry or short stories or memoir or journaling… keep it up! Write like you mean it. Otherwise, what’s the point?

Social Media Eclipses Solar Event


Did You See That?

Although my location afforded only a 70%ish view, a solar eclipse is pretty incredible. It was especially great since I forgot to get glasses and conveniently have a science teacher for a neighbor.

Before I went out to casually ask how things were looking, I Googled NASA coverage of the event. The first link took me to the live stream on their Facebook page. Wow. Scientists talking with floating emojis surrounding them. Pretty exciting and distracting. They cut to views of the eclipse in various states that were experiencing the “total” effect. I thought it was pretty cool when the locusts all started chirping when it got dark, but that’s how I am. I just wish they’d have kept a live feed of the eclipse from anywhere instead of having us look at NASA people talking about it. HELLO? ¬†Split screen, NASA, aren’t you guys rocket scientists?

While the scientists were talking, I glanced down at the flood of FB comments. Wow. Lots of folks were talking and… Geez. Anything can become hostile. This was religion vs. science. One side, and I am serious, said that Jesus would be coming during the eclipse. Maybe he did. We just couldn’t see him with our dark glasses on. Scientists were talking about orbits and calculations. Which we pretty much know already and if we don’t we pretend we do. A very few rational people tried to intervene by admiring “nature” and what it was showing us. Those people were completely ignored. It was amazing. Folks were trolling the solar eclipse.

And this is why we can’t have nice things.