Monday, February 22, 2010

I said yes


WHERE I AM
I am re-writing my memoir for the third time. No, not editing. I am re-writing.  I WISH I was editing. Oh to just move around paragraphs, trim out a chapter or two, bait hooks, and tighten sentences, pacing, plot etc (yes, even memoir needs plot) 
Editing seems like the promise land, flowing with milk and honey. Don't tell me if it is not. I need a light. What I am doing is taking a huge sack of wet stuff and trying to build pyramids. Okay, it's not that dire. And I am sure I'm not the only one to travel down tunnels and then wonder if they picked one that has no light switch and never surfaces. But re-writing sucks. The words feel cloggy and I wonder who the hell wrote this thing in the first place. Where is she? And what does she have to say for herself? Of course she is past. And I am blessed to have walked passed that me and know now what I did not know then. But growth leads to re-writing. Massive rewriting.


WHY I AM HERE
On the radio yesterday I was listening to this guy talk about the things we say yes too in life and what that means for us. 
I said yes to marriage. 
It means I get to be with him in the sunshine... and when we crawl through fog.
I said yes to kids. It means I get to wipe their hands, kiss their bumps and bruises and read stories. It also means I get to listen to a toddler not having a sleep in the middle of my writing time.
And if you follow that logic through to all areas of life, it means that whatever I am doing right now, I said yes to at one point. I don't have to do anything. No one twisted my arm. 


And here's the thing. 
I said yes to writing. 
I said yes to the fun of sloshing though words and playing among sentences in the first draft. And I also said yes to the third re-write. And the forth. And then the fifth etc etc. I said yes to the editing. Yes to the frustration that comes with trying to birth something you feel is bigger than yourself. Yes to the moments I would doubt my own abilities and need to talk myself up... or down. Yes to the hard feedback and honest truths that have pruned my words and shaped my abilities. Yes to the hours and hours and hours of clicking away with no one but the keys under my fingers and the voices of 'characters' in my head. 
I said yes. 
The end. 
And also the beginning.


WHAT I AM GOING TO DO ABOUT IT
So I am honoring my choices. I need more time right now to finish this third re-write. I need focus. I need to stop crying about how hard it is and how lonely I feel. I need to remember all the times I have been my own hero and dragged myself through trenches to find me, a stronger me, pulling me up and out. And need to write the words I have, with the time I have, the best I can. And then be opened to doing it all again. 
And I am. 
Because I said yes.


So I am unplugging until the end of March to finish this draft. The draft I already said yes to. Because after this I think I will be in the Land of Editing. And then I can split my words between my memoir and this blog. Right now I am struggling with that. BIG TIME.


A huge thank you to all of you who visit me and leave such encouraging comments. Thank you. Really. You have no idea...


See you at the beginning of April, or sooner. Hopefully sooner. :)


Tab



 [image]

48 comments:

  1. Oh crikey I'll sure miss you. I can still email you right? Right? *gulp*....right?

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  2. I'm so impressed you can step back for so long! I should do the same with my editing, but I'm not. :) However, I am saying NO to a few things in order to get the editing done. Is that kinda the same thing? lol

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  3. Good luck, good lady. I'm considering something similar myself, for just about the same reasons. May the words flow like water for you. :)

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  4. Best of luck, Tab. I can't wait to read your book when you are finished and it is in the stores! :-)

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  5. I hate editing!!! I prefer the writing process. But everyone's different.

    Sorry this is so rough for you but take all the time you need. We'll be here when you get back!

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  6. Ah, Tab! You put the committment we make to writing so eloquently. It's just like Rachelle's post last week about doing hard things. Writing isn't always easy, but when we persevere through the difficult parts, we push on to a new level of beauty!

    See you at the end of April!

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  7. You can do it! You will be missed, but we're supporting you through the cyber waves, and we'll be here when you get back.

    Love that picture of the dock, leading to the depths of ocean potential.

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  8. This is such a poignant post in so many ways, because you are taking personal responsibility for all your choices and making hard decisions to honor them. Sending you hugs and love across the ocean. Just know you are not alone, Tab. I've been exactly where you are right now in my writing and it's actually a very good place to be, although it doesn't feel like it. Email me any time if you need to "talk."
    Karen

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  9. "And I am blessed to have walked passed that me and know now what I did not know then. But growth leads to re-writing. Massive rewriting."

    Oh, you're so right about that. I love this post. I love your writing. I believe in YOU!

    Proud of you for taking the time you need to do what you need to do. SO PROUD!

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  10. Like Carrie said, I'm proud of you for taking the time you need to do what you need to do. So many don't, then swirl in that agonizing choice. Good luck with your editing!

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  11. I have every faith that you'll get where you're headed, Tab. As you so eloquently wrote, you've said yes and the universe honors our yeses. I, too, will miss seeing you here. Your writing adds color and fragrance to my heart. I'm so proud of you for honoring your inner voice. I'm so proud to know you. I'm here for you.

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  12. I will miss seeing your posts until then but I wish you the best of luck!! Go for it. Your writing is spectacular and I've been so impressed and humbled by what I see post after post on your blog. You will get through this with flying colors!

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  13. I'm going to miss your points. I hope that your rewrite is the best yet and you find some fun doing it. :)

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  14. It's a great choice we've made. Good luck with your rewrite, can't wait to hear back in March to see how it went.

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  15. I love the way you put this. I said yes. Beautiful.

    Good luck next month - we'll miss you. :-)

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  16. I'm considering doing the same thing myself. Good luck Tab, you can do it. Yes!

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  17. i could sit here and listen to you till April comes and then, may, june, july...till april comes again....
    How can i not come here and not feel all the love that blossoms from your insides.
    You are a beautiful garden Tabitha!
    hugs
    i have missed you!

    col

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  18. I find it easier to start a whole new book than re-write (and editing you say is a dream in comparison). Good luck and see ya later!

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  19. I'll miss you too. But you have a point and I think very soon I'll be following you and taking time out from all my online networks to get some solid writing in - otherwise I'll never live my dream fully. I hope this is your last rewrite and editing follows soon :) xx

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  20. I'll miss you
    Good luck honey!!

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  21. We'll be thinking of you! Good luck!

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  22. I applaud your conviction. Write something brilliant!

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  23. Tabitha: You can do it. Your words sing to me every time I read them.

    Best to you & your unplugged time. Rock the edit, girl.

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  24. But the biggest YES of all is when you said YES to God and the gift He has placed in your life! All the best with your re-write, I am sure that God will bless many with the resulting work (and I can't wait to read it!).

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  25. Tab I am sad to see you go but it is only for a season. And I can't wait for you to return. xx

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  26. Tabitha, I am SOOO proud of you. LOVE your image.
    I will be praying for you as you rework your memoir. CANNOT WAIT to read it. And let me know if there is anything else I could do to help you (Yeah, right!)

    Will miss my daily dose of Tab-sun.

    Blessings,
    Patti

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  27. Honoring your choices. Very inspiring. And that niggling self doubt???? Disregard. You are good!

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  28. Oh Tab you will be missed- YOU HAVE NO IDEA! I agree that writing is what takes precedence over all social networking. Besides, I can't wait to read your book. Please hurry!

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  29. I really enjoyed reading this, Tabitha. :)

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  32. I just took a deep breath and dove into a rewrite of my fantasy novel Dreamers Come, so I know exactly how you feel. Editing is like tending a garden: pull a few weeds here, trim a couple plants there. Done - beautiful! Rewriting is more like bulldozing... incredibly destructive, but incredibly necessary.

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  33. Somehow I missed this post. Then I realized I hadn't seen anything from Tab in a while, and I checked. You are a strong person Tab, and I give you credit for your effort and for being able to prioritize. We'll miss you. But we'll be here waiting. Go get 'em girl!

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  34. Tabitha it is a brave, brave thing you are doing. Best wishes, my friend. I just got back from a brief hiatus. A month to focus on story? Am I allowed to say I'm envious? :) Rewriting is a necessity. You'll get there. Good luck to you!
    We'll be waiting for you when you get back!

    Jen

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  35. I hope you have an extremely productive month! I need to finish my draft this month too. Sometimes it's so hard to focus--unplugging helps.

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  36. I hope the re-write is going well. I know it's daunting to feel like a manuscript is finished only to realise you need to start again (I'm dealing with it right now) but you can do it! Just think about how proud you'll be to show off your memoir once it's perfect. Take care.

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  37. Missing your words. A lot.
    Patti

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  38. Writing is rewriting - so they say. You are in a good place and wise to forego visiting here while you go about the task. That little one who won't sleep when you want him to? Will be gone before you know it. Hold him tight and read him a story.

    Meanwhile, your rewrites will be much richer, much deeper, much more poetic and poignant for you have traveled with each one and gained a better insight. Better words. Better understanding. Yes, plot is needed in a memoir - so puts you light years ahead of many. Keep going. I'm pulling for you and your courage.

    Write me at the end of April - that's when I might have a chance to look upon my own work again. Busy times.

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  39. I hope you find true healing, strength, understanding and forgiveness as you embark on your journey with fresh and enlightned eyes. When I look back on my 'life journey' and the lessons I have learned, missed completely (penny finally dropped) or just plain misunderstood, I have come to understand and accept who I was, what I have become and who I will eventually be.

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  40. i find mutual writting here , tabitha , g'luck 4 ya

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  41. Tabitha--strong choice! Thanks for sharing it. It helps many of us in the same boat.

    There's a little something at my place when you get back in April.

    http://skymeetsground.blogspot.com/2010/03/road-more-traveled.html

    Enjoy!

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  42. Just stopping back in to say I'm thinking about you and I hope your writing is going well!!

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  43. Sending you a kiss!...and to tell you that i think of you!

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  44. Inspirational. Can't wait for you to come back.

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  45. Just a little note to let you know you are missed, and when you come up for air there is an award on Middle Passages for you (April 5, 2010)

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  46. I applaud you Tabitha for taking a break and rewriting your memoir. I'm glad you didn't shut down your blog :) Something I regret doing when I took a break myself to finish my degree and completed my last 2 classes yesterday. It's me Sharla aka ShePoet. Not sure if you remember me. I thought of you when I came across this website awhile ago. Maybe this will be of interest to you...

    http://www.thepowerofmemoir.com/

    I have a new blog too, now that the worse is over.

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