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Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Self-propelled Mower






This is my June post for Alex Cavanaugh’s Insecure Writer’s Support Group.  To read other posts, click here.

Sometimes things grind to a halt.  When they do, you have to find a way to prime the choke and power up the engine. 

I’m in an ugly place.  My local writing group disbanded.  This winter, I gathered up the nerve to send my second novel out and the response has not been stellar.  I distracted myself by setting a goal to finish a first draft on my third novel and a few weeks ago, checked that off the list.  If anything, I learned enough during my second novel attempt to know I need to give this next project a good long rest, which means writing-wise, I’m not doing much these days.  Mostly, I’ve been shifting around at my desk, twiddling my thumbs, worried about finding a way to gear up again.  But on Monday life reminded me, things happen when they should.

Okay, so if it were a perfect world, I’d go back to school full-time to learn to be a better writer. But we know how that goes.  Two years ago, I took a fiction writing course in association with the Boston-based independent writing workshop, Grub Street.  The class was sponsored by a grant from our local library, held five minutes from my house and cost nothing.  How could I beat that? The six week session educated and motivated me and I give it all sorts of credit for my forward progress to date.  Mired in my current lull, I contemplated hauling my butt into Boston to take another Grub Street class, but procrastinated.  You know, time, money, distance…oh all right, let’s be honest here and call this issue what it really is…a honking lack of confidence.

Monday though, home after work and longing to write something…anything, I Googled Grub Street summer courses and TA DA…trumpets sounded.  The author who taught the class I took two years ago is offering something called The Novel in Progress, and she is holding it, not in Boston which would be a commuting nightmare for me, but one town over from where I live…at night.  To round out this little bit of synchronicity, I wrote a magazine article last September.  It was published in May…I get paid in the next few days…and guess what?  That subsidy covers close to the entire class.  One by one my excuses disappeared.  Well, except for that lack of confidence thing. Now that I've paid for the course though, my engine is humming.  It's time to mow that sucker right down.   
 

16 comments:

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Yep, no more excuses! And don't worry, your first manuscripts don't count. They are just practice ones. :)

Kittie Howard said...

Go for it, girl! And, Liza, from my branch on the tree, you've got a gorgeous writing voice, absolutely gorgeous! You're going to hit the jackpot. I know you will!

Karen Walker said...

Yeah for you. I love synchronicity.

mshatch said...

Way to go, Liza!
:)

~Sia McKye~ said...

When our creative motor goes on idle, or starts misfiring, it is scary. It does accentuate our worries and attacks our confidence. It wars with our *want to*.

I'm glad you took a look at ways to tune up the motor. :-) I have a friend in the Boston area who has done Grub Street. He has a lot of good things to say about it.

Sia McKye OVER COFFEE

Elsie Amata said...

It sounds like everything is falling right into place for you. That's wonderful!! Have fun in class.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

No excuse now! You need to take that course. Might be just what you need.

M. J. Joachim said...

Excuses come in handy, but they also have the tendency to get in the way...

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

Wow, what a roller coaster. Be sure and tell us all about the class.

Robin said...

Synchronicity indeed! I love it when things come together like that. It feels like Destiny, Fate, Meant To Be. Anyway, I hope that you find your confidence at this class because you are a Very Fine Writer!

Lynda R Young said...

Sounds like it was meant to be!!

Anne Gallagher said...

Hey that's great. I wish they'd do something like Grub St. down here.

I can't wait to read the Irish story. So go to the class, revise the ms. and send it to me. LOL.

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

Wow, all the pieces are just falling into place for you. There's no such thing as a coincidence, you know. You're MEANT to take that class. Enjoy!

Carol Kilgore said...

Yay, you! You'll make the most of this course and have much fun doing so. I also love the way life puts us in the right spot at the right time.

J.B. Chicoine said...

Such serendipity! Oh, to have something like that nearby here (and I'm not really even sure where 'here' is at the moment). Your lack of confidence will melt into the background once you get going and commiserate with a bunch of other writers who are struggling with their novels. Can't wait to get the updates!

Juliann Wetz said...

Lucky!!! I have been dreaming of taking a writing class just to get re-motivated and connect with other writers, but my only recourse around here is at one of the universities. I don't want to pay for college credits ($$$$); I just want to write and have deadlines and assignments again. How lucky you are! I'm envious!