Making Lemonade

It’s been a while since I last posted.    Life managed to get in the way of my visits here, and in the way of several other important things.   We have spent the past few months starting over, reinventing ourselves, and learning how to live a different life.   In the next year, we will need to do the same once again, as my daughter goes off to university and our home life once again readjusts.

Reinvention means rediscovery for me. It means going back to the things that made me the happiest, returning to a time of creativity.  When times get tough, the tough get going… and so I’m doing just that.  I’m going.   I’ve started work on my first novel, finally.   It’s been years in the making in my head.  It’s been a “wanna do” item on my long bucket list, and a “must do” item on my life’s agenda.   I’ve found myself in awe of writers like Anne Rice and John Irving, who can transport me into completely different worlds, seemingly with little to no effort.  I have always loved how their words flow together in print like they were always meant to be there.  I love how the authors speak to you and tell stories like they are sitting right next to you in the same room.  I love how their world becomes my world in the moments I choose to enter it.   I love how the novels of those talented writers can lift you up, out of any stupor, and transport you somewhere else, whether or not you are a willing traveler.  I want to do that.   I want to have that power, that talent, that ability.  I want to have you journey with me, and so, I begin.

Last month, I started work on my first novel.   It is a novel that I WILL complete.  I have a fantastic mentor who will ensure I stay on schedule, and who will push me through any complications and/or roadblocks along the way.  I have the BEST group of supporters you could ever imagine.   They are a wonderful group of people who encourage me every day, cheer me on and some days, believe in me more than I could ever possibly even believe in myself.  I have a writing space that is nearly completed, with quotes from my most inspirational authors, colors that motivate and comfort me and a writing desk that is a refinished antique, BEAUTIFULLY refinished and customized by my dear friend Cathy. She understands too well how a writing space is crucial to inspiring and motivating a writer.  She also knows me, and has given my desk such a wonderful and personal touch. My space is also in the place where my mother used to spend most of her time.  It is where she lived up to her very last moments.  It’s where her memory still lives and she will be beside me as a write, encouraging me on through her spirit and energy that still live there.

And so, my friends, this blog will take on a new direction.  It will take you on my journey toward creating my first book.  I will try to bring you along with me for the next year… explaining and complaining (no doubt!) about how difficult and how wonderful the process is, can be and will be.

Thus far, the process has just begun.  Every two weeks, we are tasked to write at least 3000 words and submit them online for review and comments.  The first submission was completed last week.  It was painful at first, a list of questions about the characters in the book that had to be answered.  If one of the answers led into story, we were to let the story flow, and so I did.  Three characters were introduced, and interviewed. Three stories ensued.  At first, it felt awkward, very structured and not at all what I wanted to write about, or how I wanted to write.   As I relaxed though, I found myself deep diving into the character’s home, head and emotions.  I actually could start to watch the scenes play in my head.  I could hear the characters speaking, see their facial expressions and feel their emotions.  My second character, who I have called Dorothy for the moment, even had me laughing out loud as I was typing her voice, her responses and seeing her attitude come to life.  I actually had fun with her and quite honestly,  did not want to be interrupted while I was in her head. For that time, I had become this vile, hysterically funny woman and I was enjoying being that evil in my mind’s eye.  After all, I couldn’t cause any harm to anyone.  It was all just make-believe.

The reviews that came back from my first submission were wonderful, motivating and so encouraging. The readers seemed to like the storyline, were intrigued by the characters and it seems I had disgusted them enough to want more!  Talk about feeding the hungry!   I’m excited to continue this journey. After a pretty crazy year, the time has certainly come to make lemonade from the lemons, and I’m so happy to have you along for the ride!

I can’t wait to see what the next week holds!   Who would have thought that I’d be a novelist?  My mother knew all along it seems…. maybe it’s time I had some COMMON SENSE!  LOL

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, everyone! xoxo