I sat down at the computer this morning with the song, "Tradition!" from Fiddler on the Roof buzzing around in my head. Fresh on my mind from riding in the Waldock van and listening to the classic musical, I giggled to myself. So my fingers spat out, "Transition!" because once again this year is full of them . . . in every way.
In all truth, spring has typically been a transition time of sorts for me. Cleaning out closets--out with the winter garb and in with the spring. Watching curtains flutter from an open window. Reevaluating writing tasks. Seeking the Lord's direction. Wrapping up homeschool classes and welcoming summer fun. Recommitting to a walk around the block, at least most days of the week.
When one part of life shifts, other parts do as well. This is a year to devote to family primarily, as my missionary children and grandchildren are on furlough in the States after a three-year stint in India. Thus, I've had to tweak my writing life. It was time for a break anyway, and it couldn't have come at a better time. I am well ahead of the game when it comes to cranking out novels. There are those seasons when it seems the ideas keep tumbling out on top of one another faster than a writer can scribble them down. Lots of fun, since a writer knows all too well that it may not always be that way.
So, what does a writer do when in between writing projects? Well, this writer grades student papers for a creative writing class and finishes up end of the year evaluations. She boosts marketing efforts on books already in the system. She works on a new website. She studies for fall classes she will teach. And she READS! READS, READS, READS!
One of the best ways to hone writing skills is by reading everything and anything, especially works in the genre she likes to write in. So, I purchase fellow writers' novels and they in turn purchase mine. We critique gently, yet sincerely, and write reviews.
I'm also searching out high quality YA fiction to recommend for my teen students, so I'm dabbling in that reading genre as well. Anybody out there have recommendations, pass them my way!
I have to admit, the change from an active writing pace is a much-needed breath of fresh air at this juncture. I'm currently working through Julie Andrews Memoirs of her early life and career-- a book titled, Home. Also on the current reading docket are several Karen Kingsbury books, Captivating by John Eldridge, The Fox's Honor by fellow OakTara author, L.D. Alford, and The Book of Kings, a pre-teen novel by Jerry Jenkins.
While I won't be wrapped up in a cozy comforter with a cup of steaming peppermint tea in hand (one of my favorite ways to read), I will be lounging on the deck buried in a book, sipping fruit smoothie while occasionally snatching a glimpse at our backyard of dense trees and wildlife.
Ah, it's a tough transition, but somebody has to do it! Now where did I put that book?