Where Has All The Summer Gone? (A Writing Lesson Learned)

cow pics 210So I was piddling around with the cows this weekend, and sometime late Sunday night, wore out from cow pies and giggles, I came across an email. An email that had somehow burrowed into an inbox black hole.  And though I occasionally discover “lost” emails, they are most often junk emails.

This was not a junk email.

It was an editor email. An editor asking, mostly nicely, whether I was going to ever get to work on the next project. And I thought (after I freaked out about it having arrived in the black hole three weeks ago) that it hadn’t really been that long. I mean, geez, it was just…let’s see…three months ago since I finished the other project and said I’d get back to her soon.

Um…three months? Three. Whole. Months. OHMYWORD! ITHADBEENTHREEMONTHS!

So, yeah. Then I really freaked out. ‘Cause basically, I work all day, most every day, writing. What had I been doing?

I suppose I could make a pie chart and figure it all out, but I think that might be a wee bit depressing, to see how I’ve actually been wasting time.

And anyway, I have been working. Of course I’ve been working. I just don’t have anything tangible…say, like an improved bank account…to show for it. That’s the unfortunate side of working on picture book manuscripts or middle grade manuscripts or any manuscript, for that matter. You work and work and write and write–and all the while, you’re operating on all sorts of intangibles.

Like faith in yourself and your work, trusting that your craft’s improving, hoping that this time, you’ve captured on paper the story that’s in your heart.

You can’t put faith, hope, and trust in a bank. But I still believe that someday, that work will pay off.

In the meantime, I’ve responded to that email and thanked that editor for her extreme patience. And though she hasn’t given me a deadline, I kinda think I need to finish this project tout de suite. So there’ll be no more watching comedians or listening to Julie Andrews or messing with cows.

Well. Maybe one more cow pic. (Who knew they were so darn cute?) cow pics 211


16 thoughts on “Where Has All The Summer Gone? (A Writing Lesson Learned)

  1. As usual, you stated it so well. I think of all the writing and working and hoping (and praying) and having faith in myself (even on those days when I really don’t have any at all) as preparation waiting to marry with opportunity. Sometimes it sure seems like a long engagement though.

  2. Cathy–Writing full-time (like you do) involves juggling, and you’re apparently keeping lots of balls up in the air.

    Occasionally, a ball is going to fall …but all you have to do is pick it up and get it back into the cascade.

    You are one ball-sy lady, Cathy.

  3. And I thought I was the only one to have an inbox with black holes that suck up emails. Ha! I’m so glad you happened to see the note! I’m cracking up at Sioux’s comment!

  4. Get on it girlfriend. If that editor is pursuing you instead of casting you aside like cow plop, you are on the road! I find the weirdest and worst things in my emails.

    • Yes, I know, Linda. Consider me chastised and on the road to a better work ethic. 🙂

      I know what you mean about weird things in the emails. Except my weird emails come from friends (present company excluded).

  5. You are right; those cows sure are exceedingly cute, Cathy. And congratulations on having an editor express so much interest in your work!

    I was going to give you a pep talk, but others have already done that much better than I could. Instead, I’ll share my thoughts about how important I think it is for creative people, aka writerly types, to have diversions.

    While we’re out checking on cows or singing along with Julie Andrews, or watching TV (wait, that’s me), our minds are spinning ideas or soaking up sensations that will somehow land on the pages of our manuscripts. At least that’s my excuse.

  6. Hahahaa! Well, you didn’t exactly accomplish nothing… you have a gorgeous, new picture of yourself on this very site! And I have a feeling you’ve been working pretty hard on your other writing and therefore can look forward to more editor’s knocking on your inbox in the future. 🙂

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