You are currently browsing the daily archive for April 8, 2010.

Day One: It’s been four years since I’ve gone to a conference as an attendee – I’d forgotten how tiring it is.  But I remember wondering WHY it’s so tiring?  You’re not exactly DOING anything….you’re sitting and listening and absorbing like a sponge.  In my case, a big unused sea sponge.

For a full three-day conference, this one is affordable for a currently starving writer.  And while I feel that I got a lot out of it, I couldn’t put my finger on much that is specific.  I just feel like I soaked up the words, the atmosphere, the people.  I took pages of notes – sometimes on the speakers and sometimes on my reflections.  It’s interesting to be physically surrounded by creative people.  I don’t think I’ve ever been around so many creative people in one space.  The energy is so different from being around business people, which is all I’ve been around for years and years. 

Can I define that energy?  Let’s see… it’s open, it’s pure, it’s insecure, it’s communal, it’s affected, it’s self-centered.  It’s interesting

The sessions I attended focused on a wide variety of things – poetry, ambition, advice to new writers, travel writing with a family in tow, and they raised more questions than they answered.  But I think that’s a good thing.  I intrigued myself by feeling more connected to the concept of writing poetry, which is what I cut my teeth on as a writer in my youth, teens and twenties.  The poetry muse fled, until the last year or so, when, as muses mysteriously do, she returned.  I puzzled over the value of an MFA (not that I would ever want to go back to school).  I thoroughly enjoyed basking in the presence of people who love language, who play with words, and who treat creativity with joy and reverence.

The most basic thing I took away today was this:  Go to the desk.  Stay at the desk.  Thrive at the desk.

Not everyone can be a writer.  Think about it.

The last thing my cottage needs is another piece of furniture.  But since I’ve been working from home, trying to settle down to serious writing, I decided that I needed one.  Most of my work has been done under a blanket on the couch, and while it’s comfortable, it’s somehow de-energizing.  I’ve held in my mind’s eye, a vision of a small desk that could fit in front of the big window.  And while I saw things that might have worked, they were too expensive or didn’t have any character.

So at the flea market yesterday, I discovered the perfect thing.  Dating from the 1950s, it used to be a vanity table, which I find both appealing and ironic.  It’s narrow and curved, with bamboo-looking legs.  Chinese red, it has two small drawers, with a center compartment that opens for storage and holds a mirror.  And best of all, which I only discovered when I got it home today, the drawer handles are shaped like little fish! 

It needs some touching up, so I’ll have to take a drawer to Home Depot to try to match the paint.  Sometimes, when I get something large like this, especially since I don’t feel like there’s enough space in the cottage, I have immediate buyer’s remorse.  But not this time.  This time, I’m happy.  This is the desk at which I’ll write my first published book.  Which of course means that it will have to move with me wherever I go from here on out. 

The little desk is already part of my permanent family.  That’s nice.

April 2010
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