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A Work In Progress

Updated: Oct 3, 2019

I have been working on my second book for some time. After finishing and publishing my first book, I took some time to try to promote it. I established an online presence, delved into the wonderful world of social media, met other writers, fiction writers, poets, artists, etc.

Then we brought home a puppy.

Everything was put on hold for a while. I even stopped writing in my blog. Of course, once I did start writing again, it was mostly about the aforementioned canine. The whole experience is well-documented in my blog.

Then came the time to roll up my sleeves and get to work on another novel. I debated which story idea to focus on next. I had two in mind. And by debated, I mean procrastinated.

So now I'm fourteen chapters into my second book. I don't have the kind of time to write like I did before, but I have been making progress.

Generally speaking, I don't like to discuss works in progress. At least not in much detail. I don't think it’s a good practice. But discussing some generalities is perfectly acceptable.

In my work in progress, my protagonist, Annie, is also a bit of a work in progress. She hadn’t planned to still be a work in progress at this point in her life. But she is.

As she is reshaping her life, she is suddenly forced to step backwards, back in time. She receives news of her father's heart attack. She hasn't spoken to him in months. They don’t have a great relationship. As she travels thousands of miles back home to be with him, she examines her life, how she got where she is now.

I've thought about being a writer since I was very young. But it was always on the back burner. I had plans to be a musician. An artist. A cartoonist. Writing was always in the back of my mind; but I envisioned writing short stories, essays, narrative non-fiction. Then at the age of fifty-one, I began writing a novel. It was a story I had begun almost twenty years before, but hadn’t written much down. It was mostly in my head.

When I finished the book, it was really only the beginning of a whole 'nother journey. But one thing was certain: I could consider myself a writer. I had written a book. A novel. Granted, a short novel, but a novel nonetheless.

But I'm still a work in progress. I think we all are. Aren't we? Some people are more established, more firmly entrenched in the life they have chosen for themselves. But aren't we always changing and growing? Aren’t we all continuing to reshape our lives?

One thing that has remained steady — no matter how much my ship has drifted — is my unparalleled skills in the field of procrastination. So I'm going to stop blogging from my phone, pick up my laptop and finish chapter ten. I don't know which chapter of my life is being written right now; all I know is it’s not the epilogue. There are still plenty of plot twists ahead. I guarantee it.

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Sometimes allowing ourselves a break (procrastinating?) helps in moving forward a big step, instead of continuously moving forward small steps and losing the big picture. I've been a work in progress for 39 years :-)

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