So at the risk of tooting my own horn, I'm going to share a comment from my last post. Said Mama Pea: "Holy moly, you are such a fantastic writer!! The sky's the limit regarding this talent of yours. Write like crazy during this period of your life. It will pass quickly, and looking back you'll realize you have heaps of fodder for an awesome book that will help others."
Well, guess what? That book is in the works. Right now.
|University of King's College, Halifax, NS|
It's a two-year low residency program, so I spend six weeks in intensive residencies (two weeks in Halifax last August, one in Toronto in January, another two weeks in Halifax next August and a week in new York in January 2015) and graduate with a degree, polished book proposal and a large chunk of manuscript.
I'd been thinking about getting a post-grad degree for a few years now. I looked into other writing programs, but none of them were quite right. I consume fiction -- novels, stories, poems -- but I wanted to write nonfiction. True life. That which is stranger than fiction. I've been a freelance writer for 12 years but I've plateaued, become static and stuck. I wanted to push the edges of my words.
I wanted to write a book. About food, farming, family. My delicious and messy life.
And I'm scared shitless. Writing doesn't come easy to me. I've heard people talk about their fingers or pens being guided by an unknown force, many call it their muse, and I've been blessed by that visit maybe a handful of times. When I reread work that I've written when I'm in that space and time, I'm touched by the visceral power of my own words and images. And the rest of the time -- well, I struggle to find the words to adequately capture the way I feel, the vastness of my experience in this crazy life. I've tried to quit writing before but I can't. And so, a book.
Writing this book demands that I dig deep, pull back the veil from my memory, wipe away the crud and the bullshit, the constructions and the myths, and just write true. Whatever that is. It means letting go of what's past and clearing the way for what's to come. It means cracking myself -- my heart, my mind -- wide open. But that's how the light gets in. It means writing about a failed dream, but also exploring the wonder and possibility of a new one.
So I'm doing it. Under the tutelage of smart and storied professors, a gifted and generous mentor and with the love and support of a cohort of new friends on their own writerly journey. One page at a time.