Posts Tagged ‘wood’


When I draft a novel, I DRAFT a novel. Free-writing is my mantra. I don’t let sensible thoughts weigh me down. Why bother? They are chains on my creativity. This process works, it really works, for me. Writing tip: if you are trying to edit while you are writing, you are a hundred times less likely to enjoy the process or finish the story.

And then the muses sweep me in a different direction… (Thanks, muses. I love you anyway.)

A couple of weeks ago I wrote two scenes that were to take place in the medieval fortress of Saphree. Saphree is of great significance to one of my characters so there were lots of specially crafted phrases describing its architecture and its emotional impact. All of this was powerful writing, until the muses decided my characters should be at some legendary waterfalls in the middle of the open woods instead.

Usually, relocating is not too much work. A wall is a wall so change bricks to wood or wood to stone and,¬†poof!, you’re done. But relocating from indoors to outdoors is a major project. And relocating from one significant place to a place that is significant for entirely different reasons… Oy vey (which, by the way, is a “Yiddish exclamation of chagrin, dismay, exasperation or pain”). My brain hurts just thinking about it.

And yet… I admit. I find these kind of time-consuming changes fun. It offers a challenge that my typically sloppy free-writing does not. So here’s to finding a little fun in the journey and the work and the muses. May your challenges melt to joy today and the stories you craft–in pen or deed–receive a breath of fresh air,

Jessie Mae

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This weekend saw the celebration of the life of my sister. And what a wonderful celebration indeed! We partied according to our unique style, incorporating all the things we value–which means nephews and coffee and cooking and Hobby Lobby and on-sale clothes. And if that wasn’t enough to make the weekend wonderful (despite my muscle spasm which my physical therapist has already begun course-correcting), then Sunday should have been the frosting on my cupcake. The worship service followed by an afternoon of conversation, laughter, and (you guessed it) coffee. Yet, this was not all I was blessed with. The weekend extended for Columbus Day.

It was supposed to be another work day for my parents. My dad was going to get up early, go to the family farm in Topsfield, and bring home some wood. But, instead, he and my mom moved those labors to a different day. They stayed home. And it felt like we were back on vacation together once more.

At a little before 8 AM, I woke up from my Benadryl-induced stupor (for some magical reason it helped with my tight muscles) to the sound of my father’s laughter. It put me on the right side of the bed and I hurried downstairs to enjoy freshly-brewed coffee and warm cinnamon-buns and episodes of a television show that make us laugh. Then we ventured into the universe to have lunch together and to (be still my beating heart, my dad wanted to…) go shopping. It was a wondrous weekend. As I get back to real life, I am grateful for the strength and encouragement of family.

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