New Year and New Goals

Hello from the deep pits of manuscript edits. I have been down here a while and to be honest, my head feels a little funny. But the words are calling me and the changes are flowing.

Most important is that I am really pretty happy about being a writer at the moment. To the outside viewer it may seem that my career is stagnant. Nothing seems to be moving.

But those outside viewers are crazy wrong. Everything is changing. Everything is growing. These manuscripts I wrote two, three years ago are bursting into bloom, finally taking on the forms they were always striving to achieve.

I love my work and my work is flowing.

So last year I set a bunch of hard goals for myself. Get a publishing contract, get an agent, ect. Those things aren’t exactly out of the picture, but the biggest accomplishments of the previous year have been the people I’ve met, the collaborations I was a part of, the writers I’ve learned from and work I’ve written.

This year is starting out amazing. Myself and a group of extremely talented writers are putting together a kick ass anthology, we hope to have published before the end of the year. I have so many new stories in the works and TWO gorgeous completed and polished manuscripts that I am just so excited about, as well as a rough draft I am so excited to be cleaning up.

In the past I have hated edits. I have suffered through them and in return my edited manuscripts have reflected that suffering.

So my goals for this year is to just enjoy what I’m doing it. Because at the heart of it, that is why I am a writer.

Happy 2018. Hope yours is started out with awesomeness.

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A Lesson on Forgiveness.

Happy New Year! I have started and stalled on many blog posts since 2018 has started, but this is one I feel compelled to share, even though it has nothing to do with writing and everything to do with life in the world we live in.

Today my children, three and six, were playing with blocks. They started to bicker, as siblings do. My son in a show of power knocked over his little sister’s tower. When scolded, he defiantly refused to apologize, so my daughter knocked over his tower.

It was only fair.

But now there were two angry and hurt children, with tears in their eyes.

It was only fair that since he knocked down her tower, she knocked down his.

And yet neither of them felt satisfied with the solution. Neither my son, who had been the initial aggressor, nor my daughter who had offered fair retaliation for the destruction of her creation felt any better now that their towers both lay in ruins.

I asked my children to forgive each other. To hug and make up and my son agreed but my daughter held out. I asked her why.

“Because my feelings are hurt. I’m very mad at him.”

“Even though you did the same thing to him?”

“Yes.”

I asked my son how he felt about it.

“My feeling are hurt. I really liked my tower and she didn’t have to destroy it.”

“Even though you started it?”

“Yes.”

“Would it make you feel better if you guys were friends again?”

They glanced at each other and back at me, their eyes wet as they both nodded.

Then, my daughter ran to her brother and wrapped her little arms around him and said “I love you.”

He hugged her back. “I love you too.”

The tears were gone. The hurt faded away and they both went on to build new towers  while I sat thinking about what had just transpired.

Even with a completely fair and equitable solution of mutual destruction, neither child felt good. Hurting her brother didn’t make my daughter feel any better about what he had done, although it was her first inclination to retaliate against him. When all the block lay on the floor, their creations in ruin, they were both even more upset then they had been in the first place.

My daughter didn’t need her brother’s forgiveness to feel better. She only needed to forgive him. The same with my son.

We don’t forgive to absolve those who hurt us. We forgive to allow ourselves to put down the burden of anger. It may not be our first inclination, but we are thinking, reasoning beings capable of more than instinctual reaction.

Anger, resentment, hurt feelings consume us, and block us from our greater aspects. When we let those things go, we are again free to build, create and move forward with our pursuits of happiness.