Reading and Writing

My New Year’s Goal/Resolution of writing first has been going rather well. I admit I skipped one day when I thought I’d have time to write later in the day. Of course, that didn’t happen, so I went back to writing first thing in the morning. Before email, before blogs. Before coffee.

My muse prefers to sleep in. As a result, much of what I’ve written sucks swamp water. But words are filling pages little by little. And it’s always easier to come back and slash and polish than it is to fill the blank page.

This morning, an odd thing happened. While I was lying in bed contemplating dragging myself out of my nice, warm cocoon, my muse started nagging at me. He (hey, if the old men’s club of writing can have female muses, I can have a male one) whispered in my ear. Mostly he was telling me what was wrong with my story. He pointed out items I’d neglected to include. He made suggestions about motive.

In other words, my muse finally decided to show up. He had a lovely vacation in Tahiti over the holidays and NOW he’s ready to work. Even at some ungodly hour when the sun hasn’t even produced a hint of daylight.

So I’ve done my writing for the day.

Now, I need to figure out how to squeeze some READING time into my schedule.

I’ve never belonged to a book club. Well, not really. When Oprah started her book club, I did read a number of her selections. But I’ve never taken part in one where I was an actual part of the discussion. I’ve skirted the fringe of a few, lurking in the shadows of a couple of online groups. However, I recently found myself receiving TWO copies of Tana French’s brilliant debut novel In the Woods at Christmas book exchanges. I’d heard all the buzz about it at Bouchercon a few months back. And then a group of my fellow Guppies announced they were going to analyze In the Woods.

A group of mystery WRITERS analyzing a book to see what makes it work. Or not. A book that I already had two copies of sitting on my to-be-read shelf. So I signed up.

The discussion begins next week and I’ve just started the book. It IS brilliant, by the way. I’ll have no problems finishing it once I find time to sit down and read.

Hence, my problem. Time.

I do love to read. Passionately. So this weekend I intend to curl up with this book and put out the DO NOT DISTURB sign. I’m caught up on my conference duties. I’m not AHEAD on anything, mind you, but nothing is raging out of control at the moment. So just like holing up to write when a deadline looms, I’m going to hole up and read. Heaven.

I’ll let you know if it actually happens or not.


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