By January it had always been winter.
Annie Proulx, The Shipping News
Since I retired from corporate life, my time now my own, January has become one of my favourite months. Aside from the sweet peace it brings after the cacophony of December, it’s a month of quiet reflection on what to bring forward and what to let fall aside from the year that was. It’s a month of intention that sets the tone for the coming year.
My word for 2018 is intention. My focus is going to be writing. I’m moving away from some things that were good and productive in their time, and intentionally returning to my first, and long-term, love.
Yesterday I submitted my first project of the year. I had such fun crafting this piece of non-fiction: killing darlings and wrangling words until I was satisfied with it.
Recently, I came across the best description of a writing process that mirrors my own. It comes from Coaching Writers: Editors and Writers Working Together by Roy Peter Clark and Don Fry.
. . . Sometimes the writer must write her way into the story, creating sentences that can’t appear in the final version but do get the writer to where she wants to go. So the writer erects a scaffold to build the story, but dismantles it to let the story show through.
That’s it exactly. And it’s what I plan to do a lot of this year.
I’m working on the scaffold of an entirely different piece of work now, enjoying the process and the opportunity to dive deep into a topic that’s important to me.
Today though, no time for writing. I’m joining a group of women to begin a weekly prayer group and, later, enjoying coffee with my dear friend. A perfect, and intentional, Friday.
# # #
Writing mornings stretching into writing afternoons.
The heater in my woman cave.
Rooibos tea, Okanagan blend.
A knitting project on the go.
You know your word for the year matches mine. Today a careful editor/friend sent copious notes and suggestions via track-changes regarding my memoir draft. The Clark/Fry quote certainly resonates.
I don’t think I’d have as much trouble editing another’s manuscript. My own, a different story. I see too many trees and not enought forest! Have a great weekend, Linda.
I do like the quote. It tells me that words written are never wasted, they all serve a purpose in getting to the final product. What a lovely day you have planned. Enjoy!