October Mid-Month Update
Autumn has graced us with a late warm spell; bright sunny skies and a lovely bought of dry, crisp days. I’m trying to take advantage of the good weather and get caught up on projects for putting the property to bed for the winter.
I’ve also been working on the list of final scenes needed in the Scold of Jays re-write, and sourcing a proofer. I’ve also lined up a new layout and formatting source. I’m due to deliver to her in November, so I’ve got to get a move on!
The last two weeks of October will be prepping for Nanowrimo, and getting my manuscript off to the proofer. I’m hoping SOJ will be off my desk for the month of November while I work on Plague of Gargoyles, and the new manuscript following it (title to be released to Patrons on November 1st).
You may remember that I took a crack at aquaculture this last spring. I tried to farm rainbow trout this year and something when terribly wrong. I’d already scheduled the weekend on the calendar that I planned to do the final fish harvest and have a BBQ to thank my friends and neighbors for all they’ve done for me this year. Well, it wasn’t a fish fry (all the fish died), but I still had a dinner to thank people for all their help and support this year.
I’m so grateful for the community out here on the coast that has reached out, lifted, supported, and encouraged. They’ve jumped right in and helped beta read, clear brush, cut down trees, leveled land, put up tanks, offered spiritual advice, encouraged social time (walking, drinking, games, and companionship), built sheds, fixed my cars, offered rides, called to check on me, offered supplies and building needs, shared booze!!, donated fruit and cider, canning supplies, and raw materials for projects and so on. The list is too big to put here, really.
The point is, they have all come in and helped me wobble to a standing position out here in the woods. This community has helped me feel secure, and able, and independent at the same time. It seems oxymoronic to say that my community helps me feel independent—it’s true. It’s been a team effort to get me settled, and I couldn’t be more grateful. I wouldn’t be able to enjoy the sense of independence out here if I hadn’t had so much help, and it’s important to say so.
It’s helped me understand a little more how the country life is so much about the balance between community/team and the respect of space/independence. It’s true that those lines can get blurry sometimes, and people forget (myself included) that many folk out here really settle in the deep in order to have space and privacy, but we all still depend on the network of goodwill and humanity to thrive. We need each other to stay connected to our sense of human evolution, to stave off loneliness and isolation, but we also need each other to make resources workable.
I’m profoundly grateful for my community, and though I didn’t have fish I could serve up as a thank you, I did cook some grub, and invite them all out so I could give them hugs and let them know it means a lot to me that they’re in my life.
We drank wine, chatted, made some wishes for the autumn cauldron, and spent the evening together. And I am still tipsy on the happiness of it all.
It also made me appreciate my extended community, my friends and family, my people who don’t live in the area who support and aid from afar in a hundred different ways; financial support, patrons, emotional support, offers to fulfill needs and social occasions, readers, and encouragers, etc. Community encompasses more than a zip code – my tribe is vast and well distributed.
As I collapsed into bed after the dinner, I couldn’t help but glow with gratitude—I wished for this. Several years ago when I was casting autumn wishes into the burner, I wished for a community I could depend upon and put myself and energy, my love and creativity back into. At the time I’d been feeling adrift, lost and defeated. I wasn’t sure how I’d keep going in the struggle and I felt bent down by the weight of constant failure. So I wished for a place I could trust my neighbors and a town where I felt safe again.
Living out this far has been an exercise in manifesting. It’s been a workout in creating the life I want. It’s been the best kind of personal growth challenge. It hasn’t been easy, but it’s been so very worth it- and I’m so glad I didn’t have to do it alone.
In other news, I’ll be checking in during Nanowrimo. My goal is set for 60,000 words this year!! Woot!! I’m might have stretches of disappearance as I work, but I will try to pop up for air at least once a week to report.
Good luck to all you other Nanoers! Feel free to reach out and connect through the Nanowrimo writing buddy system.
Thank you, everyone, for all your support, encouragement and friendship.
Thank you for being part of my community.