Tell Them Pat Sent You

I am doing NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month), which is why I am temporarily back to blogging the way I started out — a post a day. It’s been fun; I’d forgotten how much I enjoyed blogging. I started this blog soon after I hooked up to the internet because I heard that all authors should have a blog as the foundation for promotion. I hadn’t a clue what a blog was, hadn’t any idea what blog platform to use, but wordpress seemed intuitive to me, and so I signed up – a bit timidly, I admit. That timidity didn’t last long. I took to blogging like a frog to a bog, and never looked back.

The fun of blogging comes in saying whatever you wish, but the most fun is saying something that touches people enough that you get comments and have conversations. Thank you, everyone, for making this such a great experience.

A special thank you to frequent commenters: Carol Ann HoelMalcolm R. Campbell, Carol J. Garvin, Sheila Deeth, Joylene Nowell Butler, Leesis. Not only have they helped me through a very dark time in my life, which is reason enough to salute them, they all have wonderful blogs of their own. Clicking on their names will take you to those blogs. If you leave a comment, tell them Pat sent you.

The Simple Truth

I’m beginning to understand the truth of grief — you never truly get over it. Whenever I think I’ve reached a stage of acceptance and peace, grief has a way of swinging around and coming at me from a different direction, and it always takes me by surprise.

Yesterday was a good day. I started in on my novel for NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) and managed to write the allotted number of words in just a few hours, which pleased me. I’m such a slow writer, I thought it would take me all day to do it, especially since I piddled around for a while, trying to decide which kind of paper to use, which pencil, which clipboard. (Yeah, I admit it — I still write by hand, mainly because it’s easier on my eyes.)

I also posted a blog for the first day of NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month).

My self-imposed commitments finished for the day, I went walking in the desert. It was perfect weather — blue skies and warm, still air.

Then bam! Out of nowhere, grief socked me in the gut. I wanted so much to see my mate, to talk to him, that I would barely breathe. The pain lasted for hours. And tears? Too many to count.

The novel I started writing for NaNo was about a grieving woman, so perhaps that had something to do with my upsurge in grief. I’ve been worried that immersing myself in the story of a woman who lost her husband be a bit much for me at this stage, but I also know that I won’t want to revisit grief once I’m done with it. (Yes, I know –  one is never done with grief, but the pain does lessen an the bouts of tears come further apart.)

It’s possible any writing would have brought on this re-grief – he was my sounding board (literally a sounding board –I always read to him what I wrote). And it’s possible it was just time. Lately I’ve been distracting myself when the pain crept in, so it could have been building up.

The whys of this spate of grief, however, are not important. It still comes down to the simple truth: He is dead and there’s not a damn thing I can do about it except learn to live with it.

Spontaneous Stupidity or Vision Quest?

There are so many stages to grief one gets dizzy trying to keep up with the changes. I’ve tried to embrace my grief during the past seven months, giving in to the emotion of each stage, but the stage I’m in now is one I will not tolerate — self-pity. Lucky for me, this new manifestation of grief shows up right in time for NaNoWriMo and NaBloPoMo (National Novel Writing Month and National Blog Posting Month, though considering the international aspects of both challenges, they should be called InNoWriMo and InBloPoMo). The nano challenge is to write 50,000 words during November. The nablo challenge is to post a bloggery every day during November, and I signed up for both of them. Yikes. At least I’ll keep myself so busy that I will have no time to feel sorry for myself.

The nano site says: “Writing a novel in a month is both exhilarating and stupid, and we would all do well to invite a little more spontaneous stupidity into our lives.” By doing both NaNoWriMo and NaBloPoMo I’m inviting more than just a little spontaneous stupidity into my life, but I’m looking forward to it.  I’m a very slow writer, so I’ll probably end up writing stream of consciousness, which is a cheat since it’s not exactly writing a novel, but I’m doing this more as a vision quest than a writing exercise. Grief digs deep into one’s psyche, dislodging buried feelings and thoughts — sort of like digging for fossils in a tar pit. I’m hoping that by forcing myself to write an insane number of words the loosened bits will surface, bringing me enlightenment. Or wisdom. Or . . . just about anything other than self-pity.

Nancy A. Niles, author of the upcoming thriller Vendetta, posted an article on the Second Wind Publishing Blog mentioning the three things necessary to maintain good mental health:

  • Challenges, or facing fears
  • Attitude
  • Support system

Well, this month I have the challenges, I have the attitude, and I’m privileged to have a wonderful online support system — people who will help keep me motivated.

I’ll let you know what happens. To be honest, you couldn’t stop me. There’s that small matter of having to fill thirty blog posts during the next thirty days . . .

Daughter Am I Blog Tour 2009 Update

Day nine of the Daughter Am I blog tour, and I am still going strong. I actually went to bed before midnight last night, and I’m a bit more rested. Good thing — there is a lot going on today! First, check out “After the Writing Comes the Work.” Great discussion going on at that unscheduled tour stop, and a wonderful compliment about Daughter Am I.

Next, check out “How Best To Procrastinate” on Claire Collins’s blog. It was actually yesterday’s tour stop, but I kept finding other things to do and never got around to telling you about it. (Procrastination humor. Trite, but still amusing. I hope.)

Claire is a guest on my blog talking about “Welcome to the Business of Writing”, and the importance of a mission statement. Mine is: “It is my mission to become so well-known that a traditional publisher will offer me an obscenely large advance. I will turn down the advance because I’d like to show that there is value in being published by a small independent publisher, and because the resulting publicity could be worth more than the publishing contract.” Did you notice that it says nothing about writing? Hmmm.

One of these days I really do have to work on my poor stalled WIP. I’m thinking of doing WriMo — my own slimmed down version of NaNoWriMo. Instead of National Novel Writing Month, I might do simply a Writing Month. Perhaps try to write a sentence or two each day in November to get back into the habit of writing. I did sign up for NaBloWriMo (National Blog Writing Month) and NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month). Since I’ve already contracted to do a blog post every day for the first three weeks in November because of my blog tour, all I need to do is to finish out the month and I win. Win what? you might ask. Nothing, of course. It’s the challenge that counts.

But I am digressing.

Today I am again visiting Joylene Nowell Butler in Cluculz, this time for an interview. I am at Untreed Reads talking about my Rites of Passage as an author. And I am trick-or-treating at the Second Wind blog.

This is turning into an international tour. I’m in Canada today and Wednesday, in Florida tomorrow, and in Australia on Thursday. In the middle of November, I’ll be in South Africa. You gotta love the Internet!

Today’s schedule recapped:

After the Writing Comes the Work
How Best to Procrastinate
Welcome to the Business of Writing
Interview at Cluculz
Rites of Passage
Trick or Treat! Let the Game Begin!

Have fun. I intend to.

DAIClick here to buy Daughter Am I from Second Wind Publishing, LLC. 

Click here to buy Daughter Am I from Amazon.

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