Dump: a word with many meanings. Today it’s referring to the fact that I’m down in the dumps…and about to dump on the readers of this blog.
Honestly it’s been one of those weeks. One would think I’d be used to the routine. I try to stay upbeat and busy when I await feedback. I am waiting for two manuscripts to be read. One is The Light Side of the Moon which is at 48Fourteen, the other is the few folks who are beta reading The Martlet. I hate waiting. Waiting makes me irritable. Waiting on a rejection makes me feel worse. Little things annoy me. I’m getting frustrated with conversations with people who aren’t even here. I’m half-afraid to go to writing group because I can’t stop rambling. This week, I snapped at a friend over something stupid —and now I can’t remember if I apologized or not—I’m hoping I did or he just isn’t mad at me. The veil that covers my crazy grows thin.
Now I realize I can be a bit intense and high strung, but my hiking companion said, “You’re creeping towards level 10 neurosis.” Thank Goodness, we’re really good friends and she is willing to put with me. This is the part of the job, I am not good at–dealing with the intense emotions.
Now I want everyone to know, my neurosis is not because of the work. I love the work.
It also doesn’t help that I am busy preparing for the autumn cluster of appearances and classes which is ratcheting up my intensity even more.
Each time I encourage another writer to keep going —often in public—and follow their dreams when my own nervous stomach/critical part of my brain is telling me to quit. That I am never going to be published again. (Which is total BS, I know logically, but try to tell my stomach that!)
Of course, this feeling is the key to my next “project” I decided to create a small collection of poems and short stories. I don’t know if or when they will be published. They might honestly all suck. That’s not really the point. The point is to allow me to experiment. I decided to see what happened if I did not put any restrictions on my creativity for a few weeks. I know not every idea I will have over the course of the experiment will be great, but I feel it’s important not to censor or ridicule myself. So far I have written ten poems, rewrote a short ghost story, and wrote a piece about vampiric aliens. Each one has illustrations.
So here is a short poem I wrote. It is the kindest and most gentle of the poems which is why I chose it to share.
Dangers Real and imaginary
She warns of dangers real and imaginary.
So I take pause before I jump in the icy water
Obscured with mineral dust.
Algae clutch to rocks and squirm under my bare feet,
My toes grow pink, Then my calves and hips
I could see minnows in the emerald abyss
Nibbling at mosquitos.
Yes this poem is about a swimming in alpine lakes and why certain people don’t swim in them.
PS Before anyone thinks I am moping about physically. Nope. I still exercise each day. My tummy & brain are moping, but I’m going hiking to Lake Valhalla today and yes I’m going swimming! Which leads to the most important advice I can give: If anyone can stand your company, it’s important to stay busy with friends while manuscript waiting occurs.