Muse Came in Late Summer


I went on my summer break in May. I planned to work on my novel all summer and emerge in September with a finished first draft of my spectacular book.

The reality was I had to de-compress from the whirl wind Semester. I thought I’d give myself to mid-June to do that.

Once that happened I realized I’d better get all my outdoor fun and binge-watching done while I had the time and the strength (and the attention span). I binged all six seasons of The Sopranos. It was research after all. That took me straight through to mid-July.

I had events to attend on the weekends: Pow-wows, Festivals, Fairs, and Conferences. So of course I was too busy on the weekends.

But how much writing on my novel did I actually get done? Not a whole lot.

My friend was writing up a storm, I told her I wasn’t having the same motivation or inspiration. She suggested we do weekly writing prompts. This opened the flood gates. Although the prompts were not associated with my novel, they allowed my brain to start to get back in full-writing mode. I wrote several short stories from these prompts. We did this for a few weeks, and then it died.

I went through an old journal where I wrote that I was going to write one short story a week. I thought it was time to resurrect this. I was back in writing mode, and was working on my manuscript once again. But sometimes I need to step away from that, and do something else writing related. Work on something totally different.

In the past three weeks (since I made this decision) I’ve written two stories and a personal essay. They need a lot of editing, but they made it to the page.

School starts in a few days. I will most likely not be able to keep up my one short story a week. But maybe I can try for one a month. Although working on the manuscript will be my main focus.

At least I have a nice collection of things to work on and submit. So my summer wasn’t totally wasted.

And I did learn a lot watching The Sopranos.



About Liz Kelso
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