Skip to main content

Slowductivity

Earlier this month, I was feeling frustrated by the length of time it is taking me to finish my novel. I came up with the concept and started working on it four years ago, and right now all I have to show for it is an outline and ten finished chapters. And I've been practicing at writing novels even longer, for almost double that time--about seven years. The more I thought about it, the more discouraged I felt about ever completing my book.

But then I went outside yesterday and counted my apples.

Three years ago, just before conceiving Nux Gallica, I planted three spindly little apple trees in my front yard. Some people teased me, saying they were scrawny, ugly things that wouldn't produce anything for many years. But I knew then that planting seedlings, like trying to conceive a child or beginning a novel, was the start of a long-term process.

I conceived Nux just about a month after planting the trees and about five months after starting my current novel, Briars and Black Hellebore.

Today, I have a beautiful, healthy, fun, and bright two-and-a-half-year-old daughter and a crop of 18 homegrown, organic apples--fruits whose value is so much greater because of how much they delight my child. She takes so much pleasure in picking and eating those apples that you'd think they were made of lollipops and chocolate cake.

And these two wonderful things happening in my life--my daughter growing up so fast and harvesting delicious apples from the trees outside her bedroom window--were absolutely worth the wait and couldn't have been rushed.

The same is true for my novel. When I review the timeline of my life, I realize that most of the time my novel has been in progress, I've been pregnant (which came with a host of distractions from creative work) and raising a small child. I forgive myself for not writing more prolifically while I've been in the midst of such a significant and all-consuming phase of life.

And when I look back at the other novels I started and worked on before Briars, I cringe--and I also feel proud of how far I've come as a writer. The wisdom that comes with writing practice, extensive reading and research, maturity, and even motherhood is something that could not have been rushed.

After biting into my first apple of the season, I feel a renewed excitement--and maybe it's also the turning season and that ingrained excitement that builds toward the start of a new "school year" even if we haven't been to school in years--and a refreshed sense of patience for the kind of produce that takes a good, long time to ripen.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

A Bad Romance Starring Till Lindemann, Sophia Thomalla, Gavin Rossdale, Simone Thomalla, Sven Martinek, Andy LaPlegua, and Leila Lowfire

To misquote Gaga, "I don't speak German, but I can look at foreign tabloids and guess what's going on if you like."


I guess it would be more professional and ladylike for me to be above this sordid celebrity gossip, but I'm not. I'm so not.


So let's see if I've got this straight. From what I gather...


Metalgod Till Lindemann, 54, and model Sophia Thomalla, 27 (upper left) recently exited a five-year, on-off, opennish relationship, which began when Sophia's actress mother Simone (upper right, in the center) and Simone's then-lover (between her marriages to nubile young athletes) actor Sven Martinek (lower left, in the center), who is famous for his lead role in German TV show Der Clown (lower right) thought it would be cute to set Sophia up with their pal Till. Apparently, the 22-year-old Sophia was not repulsed at her parental figures setting her up with a drinking buddy significantly older than her mom, which absolutely makes sense when the d…

35 Great Things About Turning 35

The prime of life starts at 35! It's the best-kept secret from younger people, but your 35th birthday is a major cause for celebration. For mine, I have made my own listicle of 35 reasons why experts agree that 35 is the best age to be:
You get to say, "I'm 35." The number 35 carries so much more gravitas than 30, but you're only a few years older. At 34, I've started fudging my age--by adding a year. People automatically take me seriously, and if they don't, at least they tell me I look young for my age. (Eye roll, hair toss, "whatever.")  35-year-olds DGAF. Inner chill reaches new heights at 35. Despite its #2 status on this list, it's the #1 response I hear about what's best about hitting 35. My gorgeous friend Nerlie was beautiful and resilient and wise beyond her years in high school, but now, at age 35, she gets to fully enjoy being herself on her own terms. She writes,  "I've survived so much that I don't waste time o…

Still Hot

Still Hot, A List: OctoberMindyTillWonder WomanDem Shoes
1. October As my friend Esperanza says, October is still hot "because of these beautiful global warming days." Sometimes it's too hot for me to bake pies, and that ain't right, but we make do. I know it's weird, but sometimes we must resort to the pumpkin pie ice cream from Quality Dairy.


2. The Mindy Project Speaking of Esperanza, she subscribed to Hulu so we could catch up on The Mindy Project together. There is nothing in the world like this show, which bounces gracefully between potty humor and super soapy dramz. Plus a parade of hot, objectified men. We watched the classic "Diamond Dan" episode twice in a row even though we had both seen it before already. Sometimes that's what you have to do when you have talked and giggled through all the brilliant dialog. We wouldn't want to lose the... thread.

3. Till Lindemann Speaking of hot, objectified men, Till Lindemann's book of photog…