snow, Uncategorized, writing, writing fiction, writing process

Slowing Down, Making It More Delicious

2018Nov12BerriesSnowSMALL
Lily Chang © 2018

This morning’s drive was anything but a walk in the park. What normally took thirty-five minutes dragged into double the time. We inched through snow and ice, as snow continued falling and threatened visibility. On the way, some cars slid, and we even saw tracks where wheels had slid or perhaps bounced into the curb.

Though I was motivated to get to the school on time, so half the brood could catch the bus to the other campus (after all, I would have liked avoiding the hassle of driving to both campuses and kissing my potentially productive morning goodbye), I wasn’t willing to compromise safety or sanity to get there as quickly as possible.

When we were twenty minutes past the bus pickup time and we still had two miles left to go, cars still bumper to bumper and faced with a sudden bathroom emergency, I didn’t see any hope of getting the kiddos to the bus that would take them to the other campus on time.

However, at the gas station for the necessary bathroom stop, we saw one of the buses pass by. It was just as late as we were. With renewed hope, we did our best to catch up to it. The trip was slow and laborious, but we eventually got there. We arrived as the bus was just taking off. Seemingly, we were just a moment too late.

The two that needed a ride got out. The bus driver stopped and opened the door. I was nearly in tears at the kindness he or she showed in letting the kiddos on. I smiled and exhaled. They were able to take the bus the rest of the way.

The job of getting the kiddos to school got done, not on my own desired timing but in enough time.

***

Besides keeping safe on the road, taking the time to do something well can pay off in life. I think of this chocolatier’s shop that I only discovered recently and have been chewing on why I like those chocolates and truffles. It isn’t just that they’re delicious and they’re made from fair-trade cacao, but it’s something else in addition to that.

2018Oct18CaramelCreamTrufflesSMALL
Lily Chang © 2018
2018Oct18SilkRoadTrufflesSMALL
Lily Chang © 2018

The chocolatier at Stargazer Fine Chocolates and Coffee, Karen, takes the time to make the truffles beautiful. She had to master the science behind making good quality truffles, and then, she went above and beyond that to make it even better. It’s beautiful art.

***

Looking at my own craft, I’ve been trying to figure out my hang-up in starting the Book 2. I’ve stalled. I’ve stalled. And, I’ve stalled some more. I even signed up to do the NaNoWriMo to get myself moving. That hasn’t helped. At just over 200 words, not much is happening here. I’m now dragging my feet through thick, heavy, and wet snow.

2018Nov12PineconesOnTreeSnowSMALL
Lily Chang © 2018

So, I decided to revisit Book 1, think about the agent/query rejections, and determine where my focus should be. I won’t pretend. I’ve had my doubts and my share of frustrations, that ended with nothing getting done.

In the end, what matters to me most is doing things well. Minding my P’s and Q’s isn’t enough. I want people to get my story, connect with it, and invite the imagination out to play, with no inhibitions but only curiosity and interest propelling them forward.

Now, with comments from an author and expert in magical realism for adults, I have enough distance (and time) from Book 1 to be ready to make tweaks needed to make the manuscript for Book 1 absolutely delicious and tasty.

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