Our group is nothing if not practical. We set rules, meet regularly, maintain constant contact. We are serious students of this craft and business. Yet we all openly admit to a belief in the otherwordly when it comes to writing. There are days when the Muse is scarce, and those when she zaps us with what Therese Fowler calls writing magic.
Our practical little group believes in signs with all our hearts. Lisa, Amy and Lynne all have received tangible encouragement from the powers that be, the most amazing of which was a letter found in an antique shop inscribed with a character's name. For the longest time, I was disappointed. No signs for me. Oh, sure, the Muse would appear with a blast of (much appreciated!) writing magic, but there was nothing I could hold onto as a talisman of hope. Then, overwhelmed for several days by paying work and family schedules and not writing, I received this at the end of a Chinese restaurant meal:
"Take the chance while you still have the choice."
I started to make time, here and there, dribs and drabs. A week or so later, I received this:
"Chance favors those in motion."
More writing, every day, and I earned this:
"You're transforming yourself into someone who is certain to succeed."
I taped the three fortunes on the plastic bookmark in my schedule book, the one I look at every day when figuring out where the kids have to be and what my boss needs. I started to touch the story again -- think, write, edit -- every day, and that excitement began to bubble, when you know, just know, you're doing something well. The Muse took notice.
I had finagled my daughter out the door for a second time after much drama. I had cleared my morning to write. I knew what I wanted to do, how the words would flow. As I stood at the end of the driveway, watching the approach of the yellow bus with eager anticipation, ready to Be A Writer, a bird pooped on my head.
So here's one last thought on signs. They exist, and you can make of them what you wish. Amy, Lisa and Lynne say that it's good luck to be pooped upon, especially if you haven't yet taken your morning shower. I choose to believe them. Next time, though, I'd rather get a message in a cookie.
Wednesday, May 30, 2007