Whenever I hang out sheets to dry on the line, I think of my mom doing the same thing up north at the cabin in Minnesota where we went every summer when I was a kid. The place had a washer but no dryer, and she depended on energy from the sun to dry clothes for her family of nine. She would flap out the shorts and shirts, dishtowels and jeans, and peg them all efficiently on the white ropes that crisscrossed the back yard. Her shoes would tread paths… Continue reading
Summer arrived this week with the solstice and a gift of sunny, balmy days here on the East Coast. School’s out and families are settling into new routines. If you’ve been secretly thinking all year that you’ll get to your writing in the summer, you might be surprised that it’s harder to ease into your new novel than you expected. I’m certainly finding that distractions abound. How can you get the most out of your summer writing days?
1. Like with exercise, you’ll get further with writing if you encourage… Continue reading
We meet every July on a lake in northern Minnesota to pass the sunscreen and rediscover how we are a family. We played volleyball (10 vs 10), barefoot soccer and Ping Pong, swam, canoed, log-rolled, paddle boarded, water-skied, water-tubed, jigsaw puzzled, ate scrumptiously, read books, wrote in the log, sang around the piano, and played ukulele, guitar, and chess. The kids organized the annual harrumph, which in our family is not an expression of disapproval, but rather a show featuring magic tricks and musical performances. Families took turns… Continue reading
Since it’s summer and I spent decades in school, the schedule in my bones tells me I ought to be on vacation. I’m not, of course. I have work like the other grownups, so my bones have to be quiet and let me concentrate.
Today, I’m working on draft 5 of Vault 3, and the current challenge has to do with taking my existing scenes deeper and finding a way to thread in one of my characters who has so far preferred to stay on the sidelines. It’s tricky… Continue reading
I spent yesterday on my back porch rereading Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery. My Uncle Harry gave me my copy ages ago, and tucked between the pages was a note regarding my sister Laura visiting the school nurse in 1980, so I can assume I loaned her my copy then. I appreciate this evidence that I was a generous sister, and it’s nice to have a book with some history to it.
To be quite honest, I never thought the… Continue reading
I distinctly recall sitting at my desk in my 5th grade classroom, looking out the window past the pencil sharpener to the green of the playground and longing for summer vacation. Soon, I thought. Soon I’ll be free.
June freedom still calls to me, and I luxuriate in the long sunny evenings and weekends of adventure. I hope you soon find yourself on a hammock with a book, on a screen porch with a frosty glass of lemonade, or in a canoe with a dog. Embrace the kid in your heart heart. Happy trails.