Absence Makes The Blog Grow Fonder

This is going to be a terrible post. I'm going to write it anyway. Events of the past two weeks have been more than a little manic—there were weddings and hospital visits and well-run committee meetings and last-minute opportunities I tried to seize with both hands. it was the most overwhelmed I've felt since graduate school. (If you handle stress by making jewelry and watching sitcoms for hours on end, graduate school is kind of a rough go.) And for the first time since I started this blog a year ago, I let my posting schedule lapse. And lapse. And lapse some more. And with every day that passed, the pressure grew.

Obviously, what I needed to do to get back into the swing of things was to write the Best Blog Post of All Time.

This, as should be obvious, is not that post.

A slanted, narrowly-focused image of the Queen of Clubs from a German deck: a drawing of a pale-skinned woman with blond hair, in a an old-fashioned high-necked gown, holding a bright red flower in her right hand.

When you're trying to write the Best Blog Post of All Time, this is when you learn that all your ideas are completely trivial and uninteresting. You have no wisdom to impart, unless by "wisdom" you mean "ability to look through Etsy listings for awesome things." Or "hey you guys you won't believe this but weddings are an epic party."

Or "hey you guys you won't believe this but living through an episode of House is not as much fun as it sounds, even when your husband is tall and scruffy and handsome like Hugh Laurie and—bonus!—has to wear a temporary eyepatch that makes him look like a sexy supervillain."

Or—and it's entirely probably I will go on and write this post—"hey you guys, I keep hearing these two songs back to back on the radio, and they have got me rethinking everything I thought I knew about Michael Bublé and Josh Groban."

{Ed note: there is a much funnier response to this exact process from the ever-glorious Hyperbole and a Half.}

None of these felt big enough, ambitious enough, real enough to be my first post after a fortnight's absence. This post is neither big nor ambitious—but at least it has the virtue of being real.

Times like this, I am reminded that I am still very new to the process of being a Professional Writer. As in, I'm still learning precisely how to do revisions—the sticky, gory, long-form kind where you juggle several strands of a story that does not go precisely from A to B. The kind where you realize you've just mixed your metaphors—juggling strands, come on—and the whole thing falls apart as a result. And it's really tempting to throw myself into a novella with five steps of plot and then just work on character and scene development.

But that's not how I'm going to get better.

So I'm writing this post knowing it's not the Best Blog Post of All Time, because it needs to be written if I'm going to pick myself up and keep going. And I'll muddle through those revisions, and revisions on the other works in progress, and throughout I will remind myself that completely restructuring a 50,000-word manuscript is an investment in time and patience. And I will cut myself some slack, and when I get really down I will put away the computer and pick up my beading needle and make something like this Dragon Bangle from Nancy Jones' brilliant pattern.

Because sometimes in life, there is a Falling Down. That's inevitable.

You just have to remember about the Getting Up.