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  • Sue Hawley

New Year... (Mostly) Same Me

The hustle and bustle of the holiday season is now behind us and it’s time to settle into the doldrums of winter. Unless you love winters sports (which I don’t) winter is a dreary time of year—cloudy, cold and snowy. Many people have good intentions when making their New Year’s Resolutions but even this early into the new year those resolutions seem to be in the distant past. I stopped making resolutions years ago—who was I kidding? I wasn’t going to exercise daily or lose those extra ten pounds any time soon. I’ve promised myself though that I’d finish the two books I’ve managed to partially write. Maybe.

Writing is much like any other endeavor in life—you have to keep at it to be able to accomplish the task at hand. Some days are easier than other days. Just when I think I’m back in the ‘groove’ the phone rings and some type of minor or major distraction takes my mind off the story. The next thing I know weeks, if not months, have flown by and the story hasn’t moved an inch. Winter should be the perfect time to write. No lawn to mow or garden to weed, grandkids all in school and not needing Nan to take them somewhere, the weather lousy enough to make staying indoors a must and routines easier to keep for some reason. However, all these excellent reasons to be able to write consistently don’t necessarily transfer into dedication to write.

Dedication is where the rubber hits the road. Personally, I have those wonderful moments when writing is almost a compulsion---I have to write! I love those special times and the story flows—being in the ‘zone’ is awesome! BUT, the ‘zone’ comes and goes for most writers. The dedication comes into play when we aren’t in the zone. We need to write even when it’s not fun, exhilarating, or inspirational. That’s the hard part and I seem to be struggling more at this point in time to stick to the plan and just WRITE!

However, a couple of days ago I was letting our dog outside to do doggie business when out of the corner of my eye I saw something that stunned me. A flower. Not a big deal if we lived in a southern climate, but in northeast Ohio? In January? The temperature was struggling to stay in the 20’s, plus we’ve had quite a few hard frosts so far this season. So how in the world could a flower be blooming? I was in awe of the dedication that little flower had to bloom no matter what the temperature. If a small flower could bloom in brutal weather, I should be able to write even when it wasn’t necessarily convenient or emotionally satisfying. While writing is a passion for me, that passion waxes and wanes. Some days are better than others. It’s interesting that a tiny purple flower could have such an impact on me, but it did. Timing can be everything and I must have been in a good place to receive the message. I’ve learned a lesson I won’t soon forget.

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