It’s not too late. Whatever you want to do, want to try, want to sample, it’s not too late. That’s the story of my retirement, and it should be your story as well. It’s not just about time, but self-discovery, and exploring the resources available and how to access them. I have friends who discovered the joys of hand thrown pottery, others who have become avid kayakers and bicyclists, and even one who is performing stand-up comedy for the first time in her life. I’m extremely envious of all of them.
Me? I decided to write a book. I’m not sure how that decision was made or when. Really, I have no idea, but I do love a challenge and I like to set personal goals. I needed to see if I could do it, and what I could learn in the process, knowing I had no timeline in front of me. On the other hand, once I put it out there and let people know what I was doing, I had to double down on my commitment to get the story written. Biggest lesson learned so far? Be careful what you say out loud. I should have learned that by the time I was eight, but I’ve been a slow learner on some things in my life.
Writing a book is like a major road construction project. When you finally finish, you have to go back and patch all the holes, and you realize, you’re a long way from removing the orange barrels. In the meantime, you can’t let the weather influence your progress, you navigate detours, work to avoid dead ends, and hope your resources (energy) will last.
My story is finally completed and I’m thrilled, but the book is far from completion. Now the tough part starts and I’m dedicating November to the first round of patching holes, repairing the bridges from one scene to another, asking myself if anyone else will travel this road with me. This is the first of what I expect to be an extended editing process with test readers and proof readers.
November is NaNoWriMo – National Novel Writing Month, for writers, and I embraced it last year by dedicating myself to a full 12 hour writing marathon one day to start the book. This year, I am dedicating November to – FinWhYStaMo– Finish What You Started Month. (Hey, this works for closet cleaning, knitting projects, and organizing e-files, whatever you need to finish, so feel free to join me.)
This post is not as much about writing a book as it is about exploring what brings you joy and trying something new. I have no idea if my book will ever catch any wind under its wings, but that’s not entirely the point.
Will Carrie be patient while Rob figures out what to do about Amy? Will Rob take the job in China and leave it all behind? What’s the story with Morgan’s blue hair and nose ring? Will any of this still be in the story as it gets refined?
Who knows, but now that I’ve said it out loud, I better make sure I answer these questions soon, for my sake, if no one else’s. I need to finish this book, because I’ve already got the second one started in my head, and I need to get it written. Before it’s too late.
Oh I have a list of things/projects I was going to get done once I retired….oops…..almost 4 years later and there are still things on the list I haven’t done….maybe this will inspire me!
Pam Sievers says
Thanks for the comment. When you’re ready, you just have to comit to getting it done. I think that’s the secret. (As I’m well into year two. Maybe I shouldn’t dispense advice.)
Your discipline is an inspiration! Plus, a lot of us want to read the book! If I lived closer, I would come over and help with some of that closet cleaning so you could devote yourself to literary pothole repair. Good luck!
Pam Sievers says
Thanks! And for what it’s worth, my closets are in good shape. I just need to focus on this project. It’s been fun.
Charlene Pahl says
Glad to hear you’ve reached the editing stage. That’s a mile marker many would be writers never reach. Give yourself an attagirl from me. Here’s one good luck in the rest of your journey.