One of those days …

Saturday. One of those days I can’t settle down. I’m up and down like a yo-yo, (she said, employing possibly the most trite cliche of the day, and aren’t “trite” and “cliche” redundant?) And now I’m editing as I write. No wonder nothing is getting done today. Except a few loads of laundry which is always my go-to when I’m restless at the keyboard or on the page.

WildWomen_cvr_fAnd then there is the bowlful of Chex Mix snacks I devoured while researching custom-made blank books on the Internet. (I want to create a special blank book for use with my new book, Wild Women, Wild Voices; one that readers/writers can use to keep their Journey Notes as they work through the Explorations in the book. Oh! I hope they love it.) I also tweeted, asking journal writers and writing practitioners which they prefer: lined or unlined; wire-bound or perfect bound for their blank books. (Which do you prefer?)

Also what attracted my attention today:

• I made a short video of the sweet little bird that’s been coming every morning to the wire outside my apartment and singing a complicated tune. I posted the video on Facebook asking my FB friends if they could translate the little bird’s message. Can you?

oscar_statue• Research on the Oscars. I’m going to the annual Oscars party at my friend Patty’s house tomorrow evening. I’ve only seen a couple of the nominated films so I thought the research, polling through the “experts,” might give me some edge in our $5 pool. But even if I’d seen all the films and studied all the categories, considered the odds, I’d never win against Bonnie. She’s taken the pool every year since we started the thing. Still, my competitive spirit won’t let me just give up the five bucks without at least some effort.

• A read-through (again) of the Introduction of my new book, wondering what to excerpt for the updated website (it’s coming soon… can’t wait to see how it’s going to look.) I’m still not sure what I’ll post, but I like these lines: We know many things: why spiders like dark places, why moths are drawn to the light; we know the urging of blossom to break open every spring. Given a clear night and a blanket spread on the summer grass, we can translate the midnight language of the stars. We understand the necessity of sex, the order of death, the beauty of mourning.

Winter blizzard snow outside the window of a warm room• Checked the weather in places where my friends and family are on this Saturday when it’s 68 degrees here in San Diego. Beacon, NY: 23 and snowing; Portland, OR: 53 but sunny; Oakland (daughter) 65 and some sun; Kansas City (grandson) 45 and cloudy; Columbia, MO (another grandson): 40 and cloudy.

It all started this morning as I paged through the beautiful book honoring my friend Drusilla Campbell that arrived in yesterday’s mail. It features all her blog posts from when she was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer; many, many photographs of her at an early age up through her last days; lovely photos with her family, more with her husband, Art. The book also holds dozens of Art’s poems about Dru. I miss her terribly. Maybe that was what set me to my flightiness today.

What do you go for when you can’t settle down to write or to work?

When Wild Voice Speaks, Pay Attention

I’ve been throwing around the term “wild voice” for a long time, at least as long as I’ve been doing the Wild Women writing workshops (these date back to 1997). With my new book Wild Women, Wild Voices, due to be released April 7,  I thought I’d better explain what I mean when I say “wild voice.”

Magellan Penguin flaps its wings, Punta Arenas, ChileAs its name implies, wild voice is untamed and unbounded and holds the possibility of great beauty. It goes deep, like roots; it sings because it can. It is not domesticated or restrained. Wild voice can be dangerous; it can be outrageous. It is passionate, exuberant, and eager for life. It is turbulent and stormy, often arriving as unexpectedly as a summer squall. It can also appear as tranquil as an autumn breeze or a lazy river—but just try to capture either of these in a bottle and put them on a shelf.

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Disoriented and lonely — a writer without a group

I had the strangest feeling of disorientation last night. As I sat at my computer answering emails suddenly I felt a little dizzy and I realized I didn’t know what day it was. I had the sense I was supposed to be somewhere, but I didn’t know where. Certainly it wasn’t there, at my desk, in my yoga clothes, emailing about lunch dates with my sisters.

Then I realized: it was Wednesday night and I was supposed to be with my Wednesday writing group. That was it!

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