When we moved to Colorado last July, I was right smack dab in the middle of a deadline for my first novel. I don't know how you feel about deadlines, but I treat them like sacred holiness over here. I rarely ask for more time because I want my publisher/editors to know I will move heaven and earth to get things done on time.
And I will.
But that doesn't mean I don't feel a little scared in the middle of it all. Sure I can't deliver. Sure I'm writing drivel...
That's how I'm feeling now. Because, as luck would have it, we're moving again. Right smack dab in the middle of my deadline for Book 2. If this is a sign of things to come, we're in trouble, because my third book is due soon too and I really don't want to entertain the idea of one more move. (Ever.)
My agent, Sandra, is more than just a businesswoman. She's my friend. So when I hinted (or maybe more than hinted) that I was verging on terrified, she called me. She had just the right words. Our conversation went like this:
Sandra: Did you see the movie Up in the Air?
Me: The one with George Clooney?
Sandra: Wait. Let me leave the family room. Ok. No, not that one, the one with the balloons.
Sandra: Yeah, Up.
Me: Yes. I cried.
Sandra: I think that's what you have to do right now. Get yourself a big bouquet of balloons and just hold on tight.
She understands that this is tricky...living life, being a mom, working my freelance assignments, moving & moving again and writing/editing novels. She gets it. And she said exactly the right thing at exactly the right time.
For some reason, that night, I sat down to paint and found my balloon bouquet waiting for me...and I knew I'd be okay. Don't get me wrong, I'm still a little nervous, but the fear of starting had gone. Her words had inspired me to change my thinking...
This painting tells the story of where I'm at right at this very minute...
Because life is like that sometimes...We're just along for the ride. We're holding on, waiting for the wind to change...waiting to be carried off to a beach somewhere with an umbrella drink and a swimsuit that makes all of our cellulite invisible.
But this. This "in the middle of it" part...this is what I want to savor. I want to remember how it felt to write my first three novels...so it means more when I see them on the shelf at Barnes and Noble. I don't want to wish these moments away.
This is the good stuff.
The stuff to remember.
And now that I've gotten a bird's eye view of it all, I feel more ready than ever...time to fly.