"What do you plan to do with your one, wild, precious life?" -Mary Oliver

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

When the Geese Fly

The geese have been flying overhead with their mournful honking. I can’t think of anything that more poignantly portends autumn than the migration of Canadian geese. And if a sound could describe the silent angst of the querying writer, it would be geese flying overhead. It was eighty degrees yesterday, but the geese tell it all. Then last night a powerful storm blew through the area and this morning my ferns lie broken on the impatiens (which aren’t long for this world), and I hang them back up wondering where I’ll put them come October.

I told myself that fall was a good time to start querying agents again. But now I have to think about my ten pages for the Literary Lab's Notes From Underground anthology and ponder where my little story is going. A short story is a semi-circle and doesn’t really end, but it has to go somewhere. I want my readers to sit back at the end of it all and say, “wow,” or at least, “hmmm.” I don’t want to let down those who expressed confidence in my ability to see it through. That, plus my second novel is gnawing at my inner consiousness. It currently has no ending whatsoever and has sat on the back burner since the geese last flew the other way. So how do you organize your writing life? What is more important, querying the old or losing yourself in the new? And if you juggle both, I'd like to hear about that too.

15 comments:

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Beautiful descriptions and a sense of yearning in this post.
I love to watch and hear the geese overhead, too.
As for organizing my writing life? Mostly, I try to stick with the main project I haven't completed and try not to let too much time go to other work. But sometime it is good to branch away, in order to shake things up a bit.

C. N. Nevets said...

"A short story is a semi-circle and doesn’t really end, but it has to go somewhere."

Wow. I'm going to be pondering that description for a long time...

Liza said...

Lovely description about the geese. I am always proud when my hangin impatience lasts well into the fall and never replace them with the mums that are so prolific this time of year. When it's over, it's over I say. Good luck with your story and if I didn't say so earlier, congratulations on being a winner in the contest.

Wine and Words said...

Yestarday I interfaced with geese. I think they so much more beautiful honking mid-flight than yapping at my jeans. I was a little frightened by the deciple of their need. And I with no bread. I ran. Quickly. Come fall. Quickly.

Jemi Fraser said...

It's such a hard balance. I've put aside the new recently to put another polish on the old - and that is SLOW going!

Yvonne Osborne said...

Tricia,
You are a constant inspiration to me. Thanks for being a frequent commenter on my blog. Lately I've been feeling like I'm branching out in too many directions. Gotta rein myself in...

Nevets,
I remember a creative writing prof. telling me something like that and it stuck.
Thanks for hanging out here.

Liza,
I've never thought of that...just let the impatiens flourish and don't worry about the mums. Yeah...everybody has mums in October. Thank you!!

Annie,
Geese are much more attractive flying overhead then doing their thing underfoot. I had to laugh at your comment. Thanks.

Jemi,
Thanks. Yes, that's the hard thing for me too...putting polish on the old.

Travener said...

Funny, some big honkin' Canada geese flew over my house just yesterday headed south.

Lucky bastards.

I'm stuck here, doing what I always do: try to make some money while tending kids, avoiding spousal unit, waiting on queries on the old novel, try to make progress with the new.

I wouldn't describe my life and writing as organized so much as organized for me.

Michelle Davidson Argyle said...

Good luck with your 10 pages! I can't even imagine writing something like that. Good thing I'm just formatting it all. :)

Yvonne Osborne said...

Trav,
I thought about what you said all day...."I wouldn't describe my life and writing as organized so much as organized for me." I think that is true for many of us. At least it feels like that sometimes.
Thanks.

Michelle,
Thank you. The formatting of it must be a huge undertaking. I'm so looking forward to the writing aspect of it and seeing the finished product.

Piedmont Writer said...

Are you me? I swear to God your post sounds just like what I was thinking, am doing...querying, working on the Lit Lab Note from Underground, watching geese, working on my second book.

Wow, just wow.

Yvonne Osborne said...

Anne,
I was thinking the same thing. Plus I see we both love lighthouses!! Thanks for joining my blog. I've been following you for a while but took a more active interest when you also won the LL contest. And congrats on that. I'm so proud to have been included in that list of writers. We have much to look forward to.

Suzanne Casamento said...

My writing life is not organized right now. Regular life keeps getting in the way.

I miss the sounds of the geese. Thank you for the memory link.

Yvonne Osborne said...

Suzanne,
I was hoping you could give me some hints, being a "published" author and all:) I guess regular life gets in everyone's way. I have always loved watching the geese fly overhead and listening to their calls. Thanks.

Perri said...

Organize? um.....

I'm a big fan of the new. Can put off the query indefinitely if it means I can indulge in the NEXT one.

Yvonne Osborne said...

Perri,
Hello. I wish I could just concentrate on the new too. Yes, I'd rather indulge myself in that. Querying is just.....hard.

Thanks for commenting!