Monday, August 1, 2016

Summer Joy

Working in the Garden!

We at Teaching Authors have been sharing our summer adventures these past few posts. Carmela offers her wisdom on coping with your inner wisdom. Esther is making magic in Vermont. JoAnn shares her summer reading and writing adventures, and a lovely shape poem. And Carla  presents a fascinating series of short videos exploring her research process for her newest book.

This summer, I must admit, I have lived vicariously through the travels of others. For example, I’ve enjoyed writer Marcia’s Strykowski’s (author of the wonderful middle grade, Call Me Amy)  trip to the top of Mt. Washington, the highest peak in New England. Two friends in particular, Harold Underdown, the literary critic and editor of Purple Crayon fame, has been posting magnificent pictures of his recent travels to England on his Facebook Page. It felt like I was traveling through time, peering into the mythic. And literary critic and children’s author Joanna Marple , otherwise known as Miss Marple Musings, has been traveling throughout the northeast, making connections with her writers and illustrators as well as the historic landscape of Gettysburg, Boston, Cape May and more. It's better than a PBS travel program.

I have been staying close to home these days, enjoying a stay-cation. Down time does a body good. It gives one the opportunity to step back and see the whole picture. It nurtures the imagination, making room for unexpected connections and strikes of inspirations.

First Draft
 It could be said that I’ve traded one type of busyness (teaching) for another (writing). I’ve been focused on getting a big project done, another historical middle grade novel. I still write my first draft by hand. (Remember my very first blog post, Writing By Hand ?) 

And I’m working on two important revisions. Which, of course, I also do by hand. Revision is an important part of the process, a topic we Teaching Authors have discussed in previous posts.

But the process can be teetotaliously tedious. Life becomes complex, an endless run-on sentence of problems to solves, tasks to complete, meetings, expectations, deadlines which leads to disappointments, self-shaming, regrets. It’s brain-numbing. Body draining. Soul negating.

Don't forget to play!

Sometimes, I get help in unexpected places, reminding me just how bright the sun is.  

We have to give ourselves permission to step away.

To be still, and enjoy the moment. To take care of ourselves. To play in the garden. Or play with the cats. Read a book for the sheer fun of it. To experience joy.

Or to be a Nana!


"What day is it?"
"It's today," squealed Piglet.
"My favorite day," said Pooh.
                                                                                ~ A.A. Milne

I hope you are experiencing your summer joy!

Bobbi Miller


Anonymous said...

Sounds like you're having a wonderful summer, Bobbi, and I love seeing pictures of your garden, beautiful home, your work (I tried to zoom in to read, as I'm so excited for your next book), your cat, and of course your adorable grandbaby. Thanks for sharing this. Your post reminds me to slow down and enjoy what's right around me. Also thanks for including my Mt. WA adventure. I'll be checking out the other links, as well!

Carmela Martino said...

I love all the photos, too, Bobbi, especially the last one! <3

JoAnn Early Macken said...

I love your house & garden, Bobbi, & also the concept of "an endless run-on sentence." Thanks for the reminder to step away!

Bobbi Miller said...

Marcia: I really enjoyed your trip to the mountaintop. There's a metaphor we can explore!

Marti: I agree! Stormagedden (as I call her) storms the internet!

JoAnn: I have three acres, most of which are woods. One area is a wide underbrush, where tons of milkweed grow. I always think of you when I go by them.

Thank you for stopping by and for your kind words, everyone!

Rachel G said...

The very best vacation of all!

Yvonne Ventresca said...

I'm a big fan of the stay-cation. :)

Bobbi Miller said...

Thank you, Rachel and Yvonne, for your kind words and for stopping by!

Carla Killough McClafferty said...

Great post, Bobbi.

Christina Banach said...

Such a lovely post, Bobbi, and your grandchild is adorable.