January updates

I took this picture one afternoon last week, from my seat at the desk where I spend so much of my time.  This second week of the new year feels like it’s all real now, like it’s time to sink into our regular lives again, whether they are defined by new words or not.  I’m feeling uninspired right now.  A few short updates, instead.

1. I’m not much of a resolution person.  Nevertheless, I think it’s really valuable to be reminded of what our priorities are as we launch into a new year.  These glorious words by Jena Strong, on this topic, took my breath away.  The simplest acts of tending, full of meaning, full of metaphor.  Oh yes.  And she quotes these extraordinary lines, suggesting this as one alternative to the standard resolutions, and I nodded vigorously and blinked away tears.  May we all remember to feel the wonder.

Drink the awe
It’s a brutally fast-paced, Facebooked, hypertext-drunk world, my loves, and it’s just ridiculously easy to take it all for granted, to sit there and type your message into your glorious little device and attach a video and send it halfway round the world as you sip your coffee that came from 8,000 miles away and think nothing of it all, when in fact there are roughly 1,008 astonishing miracles banging around your life right this second if you just were able to realize their wobbly gifts. What a thing.

2. I finished a draft manuscript of my memoir!  Yikes.  Scary.  I’m am now looking for an agent.  Wish me luck!

3. It was a huge pleasure to meet a few online friends last week.  Christine Koh from Boston Mamas, Rachel Bertsche from MWF Seeking BFF, and Katie Leigh from cakes, teas, and dreams.  My experience certainly defies that who claim that online friendships are not real, and I have mostly been hugely impressed by everyone I’ve met in person who I knew here first.  These three women were no exception.

4. I’m devouring everything Michael Ondaatje wrote that I haven’t yet read.  His poetry, his novels.  It surprises me, over and over again, that my favorite fiction writer is a man, but there it is.  The working title of the novel I’m working on is drawn from a line from one of his books, and Divisadero is one of the books I love best of all.

5. Grace (and sometimes Whit) and I are in a habit of going for walks around the neighborhood as much as we can.  We notice the nests in bare branches, we notice the houses that still have Christmas (or Halloween) decorations up, we notice the light on trees, we notice the different colors in the sky.  Even in this barren season, of early darkness and raw cold, there is so much beauty.

What are you doing these January days?

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  1. Posted January 9, 2012 at 6:53 am | Permalink

    At the moment I’m slogging my way through another cold, and failing to notice the beauty in anything. But the photos you’ve been posting on Twitter lately help! So lovely.

  2. Posted January 9, 2012 at 7:54 am | Permalink

    in this moment, celebrating you, lindsey…for your manuscript, for your wholehearted friendships, your fiction rapture, for your reverence of nature and the attention you devote to grace and whit. these january days, i am slowing down a bit, intending ease.

  3. Taline
    Posted January 9, 2012 at 9:52 am | Permalink

    Congratulations on finishing a draft manuscript. It takes so much discipline to do. I’m impressed, especially given all the other stuff you do, and wish you the best with it. Very exciting!

  4. Posted January 9, 2012 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    I am wishing and keeping my fingers crossed about your book, for entirely selfish reasons: I want to read it!

    Only 9 days in, I am starting over for at least the ninth time, and for once, NOT smashing myself to bits about it, and rather being grateful for the opportunity that comes in every moment to have a fresh start, a new beginning.

  5. Posted January 9, 2012 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    I’m looking forward to your book.
    Happy New Year.

  6. Posted January 9, 2012 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    Your words on wonder are always a welcome reminder, and so full of beauty and insight.

    I met Katie in Boston this summer too — meeting ‘blogging’ friends and realizing you love them just as much offline is a real privilege.

  7. Posted January 9, 2012 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

    Congratulations on the draft!!! I can’t imagine you not finding an agent.
    So far this year I am feeling the miracles and coming down from the high of the energy shift into 2012. Being kind to myself. Settling in. Making dreams come true.

  8. Posted January 9, 2012 at 6:46 pm | Permalink

    That quote took my breath away! YES!

    Congratulations on finishing your manuscript! I wish SO MUCH luck to you as you seek an agent. I know you’ll find one.

    I hope, if it is mutual, that we may have the opportunity to meet in person one day. Your words and your stories inspire me on the regular.

  9. Posted January 9, 2012 at 8:09 pm | Permalink

    Trying to reconnect with my blog life! Happy New Year!

  10. Posted January 9, 2012 at 9:14 pm | Permalink

    Congratulations on the manuscript! So nice to read a post of yours, it’s been a while with the holidays and the mayhem and I know what you mean it feels like we’re sinking in again to our lives. Reading, not much writing, LOTS of thinking, a few resolutions. Happy to be back here. xoxo

  11. Posted January 10, 2012 at 5:40 am | Permalink

    Oh I love how you ever so quiety snuck in that little piece about the manuscript. Can’t wait to hear more about it and wishing all kinds of luck!!

  12. Posted January 10, 2012 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

    So glad you’re there. And with a manuscript!

  13. Hilary Levey Friedman
    Posted January 10, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

    Just saw this. Congrats on finishing manuscript! Can’t wait to follow its continued evolution and journey…

  14. Posted January 11, 2012 at 10:59 am | Permalink

    Wahoo!! Wahoo! A manuscript! Finished. Finished is a wonderful word. I know you’ll notice it fully.

  15. Posted January 12, 2012 at 9:46 am | Permalink

    Yeah Lindsey!!! Congratulations on finishing your memoir. I’m on the agent search too. We’ll make it through together!! Good luck, good luck, good luck (I like threes).
    I’ll have to add some Ondaatje to my reading list.
    My daughters and I have been doing a mindful writing project lately that made me think of you and your observation walks with your children. Check out “small stones” here — http://www.writingourwayhome.com/p/river-jan-12.html.
    We’ve been posting our “small stones” on one of my blog pages. http://lisaahn.com/a-river-of-stones-jan-2012-3/ It’s been a lot of fun. Let me know if you want to participate too — I’m sure my kids would love to trade “stones” back and forth.

  16. Posted January 14, 2012 at 11:02 am | Permalink

    Fabulous news on your book, best wishes in bringing it to fruition.

    My January days include going back to work for a project, not sure how long for… but it makes me ever-so-grateful for the weekends, for my downtime, for the pockets of space in my days to just breathe. AND it also makes me so happy to use my brain actively in a work-related way. It’s a blessing.