Fragments and Moments – not writing the novel

On the eve of a second year of schooling in a covid environment, I cling to the long project – my work in progress – of not writing. My year off to write in 2020 saw cancelled opportunities to research, a stab at online writing workshops and a rough 50,000 word early draft.

A little disheartened, I returned to work in 2021 with a clear acceptance that regular writing would be too difficult when combined with the taxing full time teaching load.

Yet once started, this project continued to percolate. A moment of insight arrived: a chance encounter with a high school friend who shared a different perspective on a shared memory. Lunch with an elderly relative who told me stories of my father as a young man, her teen years spent in an orphanage and memories of me as a young child: talkative and interested in people.

I’ve learned to crochet and enjoy gatherings of like minded women, keeping the project alive by sharing the energy of these creatives. I’ve devoured novels set in the era of my novel, and although a writing retreat was postponed and then cancelled, I still find myself writing scenes and dialogue, moments of narrative, captured on post-its and stored in my study.

Letting things settle, for now, means that I will one day return to my writing and weave the story that needs to be written.

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