Here we are at the end of February and I've been working to finalize the interior draft of the book. I'm trying to get excited for that day after the book launch where my book is available for all to buy and read, but it's hard to get my head in the game when all I see is grey clouds and that yucky, wet snow mingled with dirt that so epitomizes this time of year. Will Spring seem farther away from us with our "March break" pushed a month? We shall see.
I have been so overwhelmed by the support and encouragement given by those following along on Instagram, Facebook, and as subscribers. It does a writer a world of good to have other people excited in their work and the words of affirmation flooding in (p.s. don't stop! ha.) Without your voices, I'm a lonely speaker on a stage tap, tap, tapping the microphone and asking "is anyone out there??". I hear you, I see you, and I thank you for being here for this.
Some people have asked where this whole notion to write a Children's book came from. It's true that I'm not overtly loud about my passion for writing. It won't come up in normal conversations or on the floor with our kiddies at mommy group. In general, I play things close to the chest. But here are my reasons for "why this" and "why now":
It was an accident:
Well, sort of. I write as a hobby, usually waiting for inspiration to hit. The last few years I've been having babies and keeping them alive, which has been hard both physically and mentally. As they say, you can't draw from a empty well. This well had nothing to left to give for years because I was giving all that I had into motherhood. Don't get me wrong...that's not a bad thing! It is a normal response to a specific life season. However, through those years I continually felt out of sorts and like I had lost myself because I wasn't feeding that creative side in me - that girl who would sit with a notebook and pen by the lake for hours and just write whatever came to mind. I thought she was gone. Mom's ain't got time for sitting alone by the lake. We can't even go alone to the bathroom!
When the world got a little nutty in March 2020, I very oddly found myself in a creative space. I can't explain why exactly. Maybe, as a response to the uncertainty, I went to one of the most consistent and oldest things about me as a way of grounding. Maybe it was that voice of the Spirit telling me it was time to get at it again. Whatever the case, I pulled out a bunch of older, unfinished pieces and got to work. This is when I found my fragmented poem "If my Oak tree Could Speak" and finished it up. After editing, I decided it was quite good. I decided it was quite possibly the best poem I've written to date! And I happen to know a professional illustrator.....hmm.....
2. I'm 30 now.
Thirty-one today, actually. There has been an awakening in me since becoming a mom and leaving my twenties. I finally feel like I have a place in this world. Before I did everything I could to blend in. I was almost afraid to occupy space. There were wiser and more talented people than me so why should I bother? As my Nonno would say, "Wrong, wrong, double-wrong". One does not have to be the best at something to make a worthy contribution. I see a lot of average people out there doing average things, but guess what? They're happy, and to some, what they are doing isn't so average, but extraordinary. Through just living life a bit longer, I see now that my offering is just as valid to the world at large. And so is YOURS! Art is a collective. We get better by inspiring one another. To summarize, I guess you could say that I've found myself and I finally like what I see.
Another answer to the "why now" is that as a stay-at-home mom, I don't have a lot of things for "me". Having this side hustle (which is a lot more work that I realized!) is a project that feeds my passions and creativity and doesn't leave me feeling like "just a mom".
I really do love to write - evident in how darn long this post got! - and I can't wait to see what comes after "Oak Tree". But let us not get ahead of ourselves.
Thanks for stopping by. Look for a new post in a few weeks when I will be revealing the date for the Virtual Launch Party! Bring your own wifi! :) To not miss out on news and announcements, subscribe to the website! I will always share here FIRST before any of the social. Follow along on instagram and facebook, @rachelgreeningwrites.