Saturday, December 18, 2010

compartments, continued

Prompt: Try. What do you want to try next year? Is there something you wanted to try in 2010? What happened when you did / didn't go for it? (Thanks, Kaileen Elise)

Note: This post is part of Reverb 10: Reflect on the year, manifest what’s next. Go to for more info.

( Due to time constraints (I'm at mom's), I’m setting my watch for 5 minutes, which I assume will make this post less “polished” than some of the others.)

Several years ago, I started writing a novel. The novel grew out of a selection of short stories that revolved around a similar theme, and took place in the same location. The stories were unfinished, mostly because the ideas behind them seemed too expansive for short fiction.

The novel is nowhere close to completion.

So, in 2011, I would like to finish a project. It doesn’t have to be the novel; I’m quite certain finishing that will take years. But I have a strong desire to complete something: to renovate a room, to revise a piece until it’s publication-ready; to organize my closets (there are only about four of them in the house, so that shouldn’t be an overwhelming task).

I’m thinking “compartment” approach (see previous post, “Stacking Sartre’s Shelves”) might be a good place to start. Since going back to work, 18 months after Dylan was born, I insisted I could not possibly find time to write every day. The time simply did not exist. And yet I've been at my laptop, diligently reverbing, for the last two and a half weeks. It seems to me that if I can manage steal five minutes a day to clean out a drawer, or edit a paragraph, I might just reach December 2011 with a feeling of subtle satisfaction.

The five minutes is up. On to the next compartment.

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