What to do with past insights




This is a photo so old that it’s my previous feeder! There is a birdie out there visiting the flowers (which have stopped blooming – I need to dead-head more of the bee balm) aggressively – and not stopping to cheat for a drink at the feeder I just replenished this morning. Smart bird! Go for the real stuff.

Not a very good picture – taken from my office window, and the birdies wiggle.

The hummingbird moving in my peripheral vision reminds me to stop, blink, breathe, and look further than two feet away at the monitor.

New feature (for me): bits from the past.

I’m starting a new feature with this post: Insights from my Notes.

I have several millions words worth of notes in notebooks and in my Scrivener writing files, and I occasionally read one – and promptly forget its insight again.

Since I seem dry lately on writing about writing – I’m actually in a place where I don’t want to change much of anything, but just to finish the Pride’s Children trilogy before I forget what the heck I’m doing, or go senile (always a possibility) – I haven’t had much to blog about except illness – and some of the insights of that process.

Illness? Three stents in my cardiac arteries

And I have reached such a place that my cardiologist won’t see me again until January – and didn’t even bring up the fact that I have stopped taking ALL the meds they recommended (on pain of immediate death by massive heart attack).

So the battle there is a stalemate. And I am keeping up the cardiac rehab in my basement – and trying to increase the amount of exercise by tiny amounts over the next few months.

And I am deliberately ignoring all chest pains that are not mule kicks, and all sharp pains that come and go, and anything that doesn’t grab me by the neck and insist I do something, because I am literally tired of living on the edge and overthinking this thing. If the big one comes along, and is silent, it will get me anyway.

I have bigger fish to fry.

Today’s insight comes from March 8, 2016 at 9:51 AM

We have a tradition in this country: Flannery O’Connor, Margaret Mitchell, even Harper Lee, of pouring time, love, and everything you have into the slow writing of a novel. This is what I want.

Some shameless self-promotion now goes with the territory.

So be it.

Putting endless time into something does NOT guarantee it will be good. Not putting time into something does not guarantee it won’t be good.
But with my life, this is what I know, this is what I can do.

I could still be ridiculous, off key, have delusions of grandeur that are not justified.
My ego could be massive with no reason.

But I think it is because I actually have something to say, and this – fiction – is the way I can say it.
Others do plenty of advocacy [for CFS] – and I am shamelessly letting them do the work FOR me, since that is not my charism.
Fiction is mine.

I think I have something good going, and I need to spend the time to finish it – without the fear that dogs my steps.

I bid you all a good day – and hummingbirds.

8 thoughts on “What to do with past insights

  1. Janna G. Noelle

    Neat idea to go back through your notes. I have a number of very thick journals from the period of about 2008-2012 – so many journals, I don’t think I’ll ever find the time to read through them all. But maybe I should read a random page here and there just to see where I was at that point in my life.

    I did read through two journals years ago as part of an Artist’s Way exercise and was surprised as how much I complained about being tired. I’m not the sort of person who suffers from constant tiredness. But then, my life was emotionally a bit more difficult back then. This is part of the reason I don’t really journal anymore – I’ve gotten happier, or otherwise more resigned to my life and what it has to offer.


    1. Alicia Butcher Ehrhardt Post author

      As a source of material, anything you wrote in the past is usable. I wouldn’t spend too much time cleaning it up, though, as that would be a real way of bringing myself to a complete halt.

      I have a lot of threads that had not changed – complaining about my brain having quit is quite common for me. And I am tired all the time – the CFS – but some times are so much worse.

      What I find interesting is that the current novels are just as vivid as when I started figuring out the bits that I’m working on even now. I say it was vouchsafed to me – came in a relative whole state – and that’s still true. I have learned a lot about how to execute the vision, but the vision is relatively stable. Didn’t realize that would happen when I started. I hope I get to finish it.


  2. Catana

    Great idea: “Insights from my notes”. I have tons of them and I do delve into them when I’m dry. I keep fragments, and starts that never went anywhere, and it’s surprising what I come up with sometimes.


    1. Alicia Butcher Ehrhardt Post author

      Many people can’t or don’t write anything. It is our pleasure and duty as writers to dump stuff out there they may find interesting.

      I love having my own on-line magazine which publishes everything I feel the urge to publish.

      That makes us mighty.

      Liked by 1 person


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