Sunday, May 16, 2010

Writing without Guilt?

The weekend is half over. Several projects are moving forward. I have changed the baby quilt plan to making a huge plush zoo critter. At least I know the creation won’t clash with the d├ęcor. I’ve decided on the ideal centerpiece for the king-sized bed quilt. I found a pattern for a stained glass window that will work beautifully as the focal point of the quilt. I hope to have the entire pattern of the quilt laid out on graph paper before I head back to work on Monday.

Then I have to take my sewing machine to the shop for service and repair work. The poor thing is at least 30 years old and really needs an overhaul, if they still make parts for it. Hopefully it won’t need to be replaced. I’ll purchase the requisite materials, threads and batting soon. I may even have all the parts cut and ready by the time the machine is ready for me.

Mindful of the fact that I can’t just let my writing and associated book projects go while thinking about other things (like quilts), I will be dedicating at least an hour a day strictly to book projects. I need to get the Postcard Rx website up and running. I need to redesign my business cards, and I have a novel to finish writing.

I hope to get several hours of undistracted writing done while on an out-of-town overnight next week. It is amazing how much more focused I become when I leave the family at home and go someplace where the dishes, the laundry, the bills, and the ordinary demands of daily life don’t exist. When I’m at home, just being around those things has me putting my writing on the back burner.

It’s guilt pure and simple. Logically I know that I shouldn’t feel guilty about spending time writing, but life doesn’t always let us make decisions about how we’re spending our time and guarantee that we won’t get those little niggling doubts. The only way to remove those feelings of guilt is to remove one’s self from the atmosphere that creates them.

I have actually been so desperate to write that, in the days before laptops, I disassembled my desktop computer, packed it in my car and reassembled it in Vermont, three times. My sister was part owner of a ski house and let me stay there for a week at a time in off season so I could get away. The place was ideal. It sat halfway up Sugar Bush on the East face. The unmarked driveway to the house was almost impossible to find, and once there, no people or vehicles were seen or heard…day or night.

Unfortunately, she sold her interest in the house when they moved from the East Coast to the Midwest. My biggest regret is that I didn’t ask to start using it much earlier than I did.