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February 14, 2019: Holding Pattern

I wish the title of this dispatch was most apt. After all I’ve been doing, being in a holding pattern for a few days would have been most welcome. An analogy, sometimes airplanes go up, circle round and round, then come down, and are then prepared for takeoff.

Writing-wise, I finished some projects and then began to circle around. Circling around was okay because I didn’t have to do much else, just drift. But I have landed and again have taken off. I could have used a break.

First of all, Susan Harris (friend and Centered Riding Instructor) read my proposal for Gift of a Good Horse and rightly suggested that I cut it way back. I agreed that revising with this intent would better enable this proposal to grab and keep my editor’s attention.

I dove into this this morning knowing that this would not be difficult – it’s easier to cut than it is to add. And I had the time to work on this in an uninterrupted fashion, or so I thought. Then I happened to look at my Wilderness First Responder coursework. Oh oh – the assignment that I thought was due next Sunday is due this Sunday. Crumb bum. I have until Sunday night to write a scenario up about a wilderness experience and rescue.

I would like to have had more time to do this; to extend the analogy, remained in a holding pattern, but no. I’ll work with the horses in between these two projects.

Yesterday, in strength training, Ben handed me my workout program – he noted on the top that my goal is chin up. I told him that this works on many levels. There is the literal chin up bar. There is my postural chin up bar – that is my continuing attempt to see the world anew. And there is the figurative chin up bar, meaning continue to work at seeing the best in all situations. Right now Pete and I are both attempting to make sense of some very misguided political decisions on the part of the Alaska Governor.

And, I am attempting to see the best in terms of my writing life. This is a very iffy profession in that publication is always uncertain. When finally, one has the published work in hand, they have then done what they set out to do.

A proposal acceptance is just the tip of the iceberg. After that, there are all phases of book production. And there are no guarantees. Presses are folding right and left, leaving writers with proverbial wrinkled laundry.

The question is (and it’s a big one), what would I do otherwise? Something, I think, that complements my penchant for short-term order and quietude, like do a night-time shift as a stocker in a grocery story. I’ve also considered hiring on as a baker at Turkey Red, the local eatery. I might find a job stall cleaning, but I have that to do here.

Nothing has yet come to mind. In the meantime, the nose remains where it should be, on the grindstone.

Next: 46. 2/15/19: Return of Brrrrrrrrrrrr or The Iceman Cometh

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