I’ve had a pause in writing and I feel it as a loss. But I have accomplished something during the hiatus. I’ve compiled 2 manuscripts: one is a book length collection that I’ve entered into a contest, one that I felt I might be able to compete in; the other is a chapbook length collection that I’ve sent to a publisher whose work I think it may be a good fit for.
It’s a lot of work to selecting, editing and ordering poems into a collection, not to mention coming up with a title, and I’ve done the best I know how with the task. Now that I have 2 collections, I can resend them out in the future. Which means that now I should concentrate again on producing new work.
It is challenging to be working part-time and trying to write, so this was a good period to take a break from the writing and work on the manuscripts. But by my calculations now, I think I will need to be working for several more years, so I need to get used to finding the quiet spaces where the writing lives within the larger and noisier active life of work.
I’m paring down the time I spend on the web and listening to the radio. I don’t have a tv which is a plus. I want to listen for the silence to call out to me. I have to be quiet inside in order to let that happen.
I hope everyone (you that I know and you that I don’t know) is warm, has shelter, and enough of what is needed to thrive. But since I know so many people who are suffering economically right now, all I can imagine is that this setback is even bigger and deeper than one person can possibly imagine. Finding this quiet also allows me to connect with that suffering, to be part of it, and to bring it into greater consciousness. I’ve been thinking that my vision has gradually become more myopic and cynical. The farther away from the busyness of life I place myself, the more I can see (it lends perspective), and the more I can practice compassion and healing.