Thursday, January 29, 2009

On the Disequlibrium of Success

I didn't pick the title of this blog to be ironic. Truly I didn't. But since it's my secret "unloading" blog, it's often not very mirthful.

Within the last hour I have finished a rewrite of my novel. This is a good thing, I think. Why am I filled with panic? I finished it earlier than expected after having left home and gone to a friend's house where I have been writing my patootie off. And my patootie is rather sore, thank you very much.

I did major overhaul on the early chapters and not so much on the later ones. As this is probably the 7th rewrite, I shouldn't be nervous, but I know it's not done. And I know I have absolutely no perspective on it and that an agent is waiting to see it. And that I've just spent the last 4 1/2 years of my life on this one book and the next one better not take that long.

As soon as I was done, I checked my email and herein is where the trouble lies: Taran is in a parent partnership program where we need to submit progress reports every month. And I do this, but twice I have done it late. So I did this month's report early -- only they never got it and now they're "disappointed" with me and unsure whether I can handle the writing class I'm going to teach there. And of course, I can, and will. But really, I just want to be independently wealthy and not have to teach writing in order to pay for groceries. I'd rather teach it as a grand favor to humanity.

I'm not very happy with being flawed tonight. The manuscript is flawed, but I don't know where (see: no perspective). My report-submitting is evidently flawed (thought I really DID do it early this month.) My inbox is so full and I've been away from home since Sunday. I miss my family. I miss Lancelot.

And it is very, very silly for me to be posting all this on a blog.

I must make something deep and philosophical of it.

Somebody sent me the following scripture:

But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies.
- 1 Corinthians 4:7-10

Well, I can say that the surpassing power certainly doesn't belong to me. My afflictions I seem to bring on myself -- with a little help from modern technology. And I would qualify as perplexed. I don't feel particularly persecuted at the moment. This scripture seems to be about really good people who don't screw up as much as I do.

I KNOW that I'll have more perspective on this once I've had some sleep and can go through the emails one at a time.

One thing about being a writer is that you have to feel things -- you know, emotions and such. Fear, dread, joy, sorrow -- stuff like that. If you can't feel it you can't write it. So you open up the emotion doors and POW.

I would do well to watch some Monty Python.

the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.

And (I think) I finished my rewrite.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Salesmanship and Stillness

I've been posting on my author blog. Lots of pictures of the kids at the writing workshops. Taran very good-naturedly took some head shots of me as all my existing pictures were awful or really out of date. I stopped having pix taken when I got fat, but now I'm getting skinny again.

The author blog sounds kind of sales-y. When I'm trying to earn money I get like that. It's irritating, cloying. I want to tell people that's not really me. But then, I don't know if long, brooding posts are what parents are looking for when they are trying to find writing workshops for their kids.

I cried through the inauguration, from Aretha Franklin to the closing benediction. What a day! I feel some hope for this country for the first time -- ever? Was this how people felt about Kennedy?

I spent some time with the icons in the new chapel Lancelot put in. (Maybe I will post a pic. What the heck?)

I'm loving the chapel more and more. In a sacred space the heart is more willing to open. Mine has been heavy this evening, despite the inauguration. Breaking over Maverick again. I have felt Christ telling me to get back into my heart, but it's full of pain. He says, "Don't worry; I'll be there." To be a mother is to have a broken heart. But maybe that's how we find our own way back home.
Will I write about this one day? Sometimes I think yes. Other times I think it would be career suicide.
And I need to just get really, really quiet in order to write authentically. No salesmanship. No mailing lists. Stillness.