Wednesday, September 04, 2019

Spits and spurts

Welcome back!

I broke my wrist a few months ago and am still in physical therapy for it. All that spare time resulted in more than a few plotting problems working their way out of my head and onto the page. I've been filling up notebooks. Typing is still painful. I reserve the bulk of my energy for work.

I'm not sure if sitting down months ago to put words on the page would have resulted in strong solutions or if the writing would have led to a lot of false starts. It certainly felt like the latter when I was doing it.

I've always maintained that we are writers, regardless of word count. The most mundane of tasks can result in some productive writing days. Showering and driving have both been good spaces for me to figure out plot holes.

I did a lot of reading on my tablet in my convalescence. "They" tell us to read constantly; that it makes us stronger writers. I usually avoid my genre of choice while I'm writing it so that I don't accidentally mimic someone else's style or story. Because I thought I was never going to get back to writing ( I can catastrophize with the best of them) I pick up a couple of good hockey romances.

Stephanie Julian writes hot, steamy hockey players. It's a wonder these men can excel at their sport when they're hot enough to melt the ice around them. Stephanie knows her hockey and it shows. I may have re-read The Brickwall, the first in her Redtails Hockey series, a couple of times.

I also spent some time getting to know the South Carolina Stingrays. My friends are season ticket holders and I usually catch an event when I visit. It seems disloyal to follow them more than my local team but I'm always working when our guys play. Thank the gods for the NHL and their long season.

To recap: writing is happening again. Thanks to my injury and subsequent physio, I have given my hero an epic injury that may, or may not, sideline his career forever. I'm writing with a lot more confidence. It's fun now that I've repaired the plot holes.

How are things with you?

Monday, March 04, 2019

Two years later

Sorry for the hiatus. Life has been challenging in the last couple of years. I'm hoping the blog will get me back to who and what I love - me writing.

We sold our house, packed it up and moved to a  heritage mansion two blocks from the Niagara River. I can stand out on the porch and hear the roar of the Falls, a sound that has always soothed my soul, and one I've desperately needed.

Our first summer here was magnificent. Mom had a freedom and mobility on the half acre property that she never had in town. We had barbecues and bonfires, walks down to the river, and so much laughter. It was the happiest any of us had been in a long time. Everything was fun.

Then it ended. Mom fell and broke her leg, developed pneumonia, and died our first winter. That Christmas and the following few months are a blur. Dad and I take solace in the memories we made that year.

The following Spring, I registered for online courses through a nearby college to get another diploma. This one ensures I can be promoted when my coworker retires. As my boss suggested it, I feel good about it. The bonus is that it's making me better at the job I currently do.

That's about the time Ky started having trouble with dementia. He was fourteen and completely deaf. Casey and Finnegan did a great job of keeping him aware of his surroundings but whenever Ky got out of the yard, he usually strolled down to the Buddhist Temple down the street. I don't blame him. It is a remarkably calm place to be. We limped through the summer together. About two weeks after I lost a good friend in a tragic motorcycle accident, I had to let Ky go. My heart is still broken.

2018 sucked dead bears.

It's 2019 now. School is going well. We've all adjusted to our new dynamic with giant holes where Mom and Ky should be. We miss them terribly but Mom would definitely kick our asses for wallowing too long. She visits us in our dreams a lot. Sometimes she has Ky with her.

My goal is to get back to writing. I have two assignments due on Monday. There is no reason (other than a crippling lack of faith in my own abilities) that I can't write for an hour every day. I promised my critique partners I would have something to share with them by the end of this week.

I figure between them and this blog, the need for accountability will keep my nose to the grindstone, no matter how painful that idiom sounds.

See you soon -ish.