“Write something new,” Robby said to me. “Write to write.”
“Arrrgghhhh,” I groaned.
We were seated in an airplane, en route to Seattle to check out the city — my first time there, his second — to see if it’s where we want to move for Robby to attend law school. Not that we have that much of a choice. All the deadlines for the other schools Robby got into have passed. So it’s basically Seattle, unless we choose to hold out for a school that wait listed him.
This is not to say we are not excited for Seattle. We are. That’s the reason we let all the deadlines for the other schools pass. This weekend, the third in April, was the first chance we could get here. Robby found out he was accepted two weeks ago and called me to tell me while I was in Las Vegas for my bachelorette party. And the next weekend was his bachelor party, in Santa Maria (I’m apparently the rowdier of the two of us).
So here we are on an airplane when Robby says “Write to write,” and I groan, roll my eyes, and then decide to actually do it because I haven’t blogged since September, because each time I write now it must be with a purpose - getting published one day, ONE DAY —because Robby’s been bloggin’ up a storm about all of our life changes, and because I won’t let him down by being lazy or allow him to say that he’s the writerly one of us if I don’t actually do it.
Did I mention we are getting married three weeks from today?
Big ceremony. Big reception. Biggest day of our lives so far. And we’re moving away soon and I’ve been trying to tie up loose ends at work at the museum to make it an easy transition. And reach out to my network in the Pacific Northwest to see if it will help me get a job if/when we move (fingers crossed it will be in the child-welfare world, but I’m open to other possibilities). And I have been busy. Trying to spend some of my final time in Santa Barbara with friends. And working on other non-wedding-or-moving-related things, like completing my new member year as a volunteer in Junior League. Pretending like I exercise. Keeping up with Facebook, watching and discussing my favorite show “The Fosters,” cuddling Robby, and other essential aspects of my existence.
So yeah, I haven’t been writing to write.
I have been writing — although not as much as I would like (like I said, I’ve been just a little busy!). I haven’t been writing, editing, or working on my YA science-fiction manuscript since the literary agent working with me on it went on maternity leave in February. I was disappointed when work on that project slowed a few months prior and then stopped after February. I’m not giving up on anything. Every author I know says waiting is pretty standard and to just get to used to it if I want to make it in this business. I just don’t want to work on the manuscript while I’m waiting - and waiting, and waiting - to hear what the agent thinks of my latest rounds of re-writes.
Because, you know, after she returns to work and reads it she might just love it so much and not want to change it at all and call me to tell me how awesome I am and then call every editor at every publishing house she knows and tell him or her the same thing and then let all the editors fight over who gets my book and then get me a contract and then send a big, fat advance and then I’ll become rich and spend the rest of my days writing and volunteering to help foster children and cuddling Robby as much as I want whenever I want and next time I’m in an airport my book will be in the bookstore and I’ll remember this time I was groaning on a plane because Robby told me to “Write to write.”
*stops to catch breath and wipe happy tear from eye*
Okay, so that’s probably not going to happen. I guess I was just trying to distract myself. Or write something else in case this first story doesn’t work out. And also to follow the advice of my mentor who has been telling me FOR MONTHS that I should keep writing, keep writing, keep writing, especially about things I know. Like abandonment, child abuse, homelessness, and foster care. Because I’m more likely to make a positive difference in a child’s life that way.
Other than bouts of journaling and dabbling in writing a little about my own past, in late November I started a new project, a contemporary story about a teenager who moves to a group foster home in a small town and tries to hide her family life from her new friends. Obviously, this is a lot different from science fiction, but closer to me following the adage “Write what you know.” This is not based on my life. Trust me, if you’ve ever lived in Virginia City, a tiny ghost-town/tourist attraction in Northern Nevada, you’d know keeping a secret like the fact that I lived in a group home with other problem or troubled teenage girls was never, ever an option, especially while attending a school with only about a hundred and fifty other kids.
I’ve written about 22,636 words on this story, but who’s counting? Maybe I’ll be able to work on it more during our honeymoon in Hawaii, although Robby might have other ideas of what we should be doing to pass the time. *wiggles eyebrows*
So that, readers, all five of you (or maybe four, since I haven’t posted in a while I imagine my number may have dropped), is what I have been up to as of late.
*turns to Robby, gives him a kiss and says “Happy now?*