Friday, December 09, 2005

Moving again


Physically and mentally. D gets off at 2:30 and I worked at home this afternoon, so we were able to go out for a hike in daylight. I ran some ideas about the novel past him, and we kept hammering at the idea of finding a better reason for my central character to stay in Indiana for the summer. We came up with something that feels much better than any of my previous solutions to this question. AND it seems to mean that I have to throw away a whole lot less of what I’ve already done than I thought.

I came back inside and wrote out my ideas longhand and they expanded and I could see how to weave them into existing scenes. I’ll need to do some more research, but I think I’ve found a very good source or two.

Photo: My novel isn’t really about these people; it’s about the land they farmed. But I hope it honors their determination and hard work. This is my great-grandfather Matthew, his wife Sarah and my great-aunts and uncles. Matthew came from Germany in the late 1800s. We think Sarah was pregnant with my grandpa David when this was taken, which would make it something like 1897. (See the mule in the background on the left? I love that.)

Woofer and Tweeter Friday 12/9/2005


Ha ha. I crack myself up sometimes.

I may be laughing alone, but I’m laughing loud.

First Snow Friday 12/9/2005


Admittedly, this is a few miles north and a few thousand feet up from where I live, but I was thrilled to see snow on the ridge on my drive home tonight. I think this is Mount Emma, but I need to check this for sure.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

See what I have to put up with? Thursday, 12/8/2005


All I want to do is hang my towel on the hook, but some one has taken it over and is playing monkey. "Ooh ooh ooh."

Lights at Night Wednesday 12/7/2005


Worked late last night. It was dark when I arrived home. So nice to see the lights D put up on the house and garage. It was cozy and warm inside, and there was carry-out soup waiting for me.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

The View from Papoo's Tuesday 12/6/2005


Met with my friend Megs for writing and catching up. We went to this little diner, which has been there since 1949. It’s quieter in the afternoon and early evening than the nearby coffee house, and they serve amazing french fries.

We were writing when Megs said, “Look at the mountains.” That’s Mount Wilson back there, all bathed in pink. Somedays in L.A. you feel like they’ve dropped a big backdrop down about three blocks away with great scenary painted on it.

Megs spent weeks this summer bringing in the hay on her great uncle’s farm back east, then went to a writer’s retreat for several more weeks. The break from L.A. has done her good. She’s grounded in her work and making good progress, in spite of last night’s struggle.

We both had a hard time with the words last night. After reading to each other, we both expressed amazement that the other wasn’t satisfied with the work. The puzzle is to figure out why the pretty words don’t add up to what we want them to.

I like writing dates. It’s good to have friends to pace you every so often.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Crows Across the Street Monday 12/5/2005

Every so often dozens of crows gather in the trees across the street from where I work. This morning they were out in force, cawing and honking and flying back and forth.

Crows and ravens may just haunt the sacred places of the earth, even if those places have been overtaken by humans.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Sunday Morning Fire 12/4/2005

I love building a fire in the fireplace on a chilly Sunday morning. It's conducive to reading...the newspaper, a book of poetry, a novel.

Burnt some of the wood that we cut from our own trees earlier this fall. It gives me great pleasure to use things we grow in our yard. We harvest a few apricots, peaches and apples, as well as a variety of herbs. It makes me feel connected to the earth and to other people who do this same thing.