No blog entry yesterday. I was out of the house early to pick up Huck & Nell. The annual turkey slaughter was taking place at their house, and I'd asked to take part in the event. Having read The Omnivore's Dilemma, I thought I should have at least one experience with killing food that I eat, but I was told the greatest need was child care. The kids have witnessed a slaughter before, so it wasn't an issue of them not "seeing" the kill, but more the fact that they are young enough to be in need of regular attention when Culley, Andrea, and the team needed to focus on slaughtering 11 turkeys and prepping them for freezing and sausage-making. So the kids and I headed out at 8:30 for the library park, followed by meeting Ra's family at Standard for several soccer games. (All 4 of his kids play soccer.) I returned Huck & Nell to their house with perfect timing just as the last swipe of cleaning was taking place in the kitchen and the banjo, guitar, and madolin were tuning up for a little blue grass celebratory music.
After a quick nap at home, Cindy and I headed to a Fall-0-Weenie party and a lovely evening with friends. I love the way the women at these parties move from friend to friend getting a hug and a kiss and catching up on each other's lives. It's a fluid dance accompanied by the music of women's voices and laughter and it makes for a delicious feeling deep in my chest.
Throughout the day, however, thoughts of NaNoWriMo and my novel hovered and darted in my consciousness. I have a title, a list of characters, and a rough sketch of the plot. The title is: Memo Goes Missing. It's going to be a mystery about a maverick high school English teacher (Sigrid Sandstrom) who solves the mystery of a missing teen with the help of her 7th period class of remedial students. I also have a new appreciation of fiction writers and how their imaginations can get totally carried away with the people they are writing about. That's happening to me. I'm actually seeing these people on the streets of Sonora, at the park and the soccer field.
At the same time, I've already had one serious crisis of faith: WHO SIGNED ME UP FOR THIS THING?? I don't have a clue how to write a novel, especially a mystery novel which takes a certain kind of mind--one that can toss a whole slew of puzzle pieces across the pages in a suspenseful fashion that leads to a meaningful conclusion. I don't know how do that SO this is a huge waste of time.
Such was my thinking Friday night when we took a break to watch the movie Akeelah and the Bee. What a sweet movie. There is an inspirational quote in the movie (attirbuted to "A Course in Miracles") that worked for Akeelah and also worked to revive my confidence in this adventure:
"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn't serve the world. There's nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we're liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others."
Thanks to this quote and the film's portrayal of a girl who accomplishes her dream with the help of family, neighbors, teachers and friends, I'm back on track--ready to launch myself into NaNo-land come November 1, and I've actually managed to attract two dear friends to come along for the ride. For the next month, Annie and Arlyn and I will be writing our hearts out.
Help us keep the faith with your best wishes and encouragement.