Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Focusing Energies and Planting the Seeds of Success

On August 1st last year, the soldier's home in Washington D.C. called to tell us that hubby's dad had passed away. I had to call hubby at work to pass along the news. Not an easy thing to do. Hubby made arrangements with his boss and came home, then we began to pack for the trip. The next day, in the wee hours of the morning, we put everything in the car and headed out to D.C. to take care of Hubby's dad's final business.

Yesterday hubby got word that an old friend of his had passed away, so this is a double whammy for him. He's been in a somber mood, which is to be expected. We're having a quiet day at home, and perhaps that's for the best.

I wrote a little over 3k yesterday, and I'm planning to add to that count today. Ideally, I'd like to get 2k. I'd say I'm roughly a third of the way through this book as it stands. I need to look at the midpoint event and start fleshing that out a bit more. I've got a list of possibilities going already, but I haven't spent much time with it, developmentally speaking.

Anyway, not that I'm having any issues building this book, but I thought I'd mention that is how I combat sagging middles in my stories. I create a midpoint event, something big and dramatic, and write it out to the nines, sparing no details. Seriously, I leave out nothing. It may read like garbage, but I don't try to censor or edit myself while I'm writing. I simply focus on getting it on the page. More than once, I've found my theme by stopping what I'm doing to write the mid-point scene in the book. That's usually the scene that really turns the theme on it's ear anyway. Then, when I have that mid-point written, everything leading up to that event, and everything that happens after it is a spin off of that event. That's what I'm planning to do with the book I'm currently working on, starting tonight. Work on the midpoint.

Moving along...There's another story I'm almost finished with. It's part of a collection, and once it's completed, I can start editing the entire edition for Smashwords and Amazon. I'm still toying around with the idea of using CreateSpace, since I believe the book will be long enough, but I will need a new cover if I do. I'm still debating it.

I'm going to have an insanely busy month, and I'm gearing up for that. Let's see...tomorrow I'm meeting up with a high school buddy for lunch at Panda. There's the upcoming New Orleans trip with Oldest and hubster from the 11-13th, The Suzannah Contest opens August 15th (I'm a coordinator), and school starts for Mini on the 20th. That's just the beginning. A few of the key dates for me.

I drew a tarot card of the day just to get an overview of how the month is going to go for me. (Hectic, for one thing. Haha! I know that much already.)

Four of Pumpkins is my tarot card of the day, for the month of August, and for Lammas Day. Sorry for the slightly blurry picture. I don't know if it's the low lighting or what. The card is from the Halloween deck, which is my favorite, go-to deck because of its imagery and smaller size.

With the Halloween deck, you can kind of get a mood for the card just by looking at the moon symbols when they appear on a card. This card shows a waning moon, decreasing in size, with an indifferent face that isn't exactly smiling or frowning. It depends on how you look at it. Some situations are like that. Some require more energy and insight than others.

The indifferent face is a reminder to save some energy for yourself. You might feel a decrease in energy, or feel like a situation or project you're involved in has stalled or is very taxing, but don't allow yourself to be emotionally or physically worn down by it. Like the faces of the moon, this is just a phase. It will soon pass.

The Four of Pumpkins shows a vegetable man walking through an empty garden. He is merrily reseeding the ground with pumpkin seeds. Behind him, there is an oak tree with only one leaf left on it, indicating "all that remains". It also symbolizes approaching winter. There is, of course, the stone wall with iron spikes on top (isolation) to consider also.

The vegetable man is blissfully working in isolation. So, what's going on outside the fence?  It looks like a sign marking pumpkins. Perhaps there is a patch ready for harvest right on the other side of that wall. Perhaps that patch has already been harvested and is waiting to be taken to market. And yet, the veggie man is eager to plant new seeds.

Depending on your mood (as indicated by the indifferent moon face), there can be two meanings here. But overall, this card asks the question: it really the best time to be seeding something new?

This card prompts me to take a look at my life as it stands right now. What does my to-do list look like? Have I merely harvested all the pumpkins and left them to rot on the other side of the fence? Do I need to tend to other things before I replant my energies elsewhere?

If you've already finished all the tasks at hand on your to-do list, now is the perfect time to replant for a future harvest. However, if you're like me, and already working with a full to-do list, we should consider that it's probably not the best time to begin something new, or take on new projects. To further support this, the signs in the pumpkin patch are spaced very far apart, reminding me not to spread myself too thin.  

No matter how quickly the veggie man plants those pumpkin seeds, they are going to need time to grow. You can't rush the nature of things. You can try, of course, but no matter how fast you plant the seeds of success, nature takes it's time to grow them to fruition. When we are overeager, that time between sewing and harvest can make us feel like we have put forth a lot of hard work and have come away with nothing to show for. Again, let it go. Give it time.

This card pretty much describes my current situation in life to the letter. I am involved in so many projects right now, and I tend to take on more than I should. I try to help whenever I can, and it's very hard for me to say no to someone. Especially a friend. If you are in a situation like this, or you need to make a choice but you're worried about the repercussions, when you get this card, consider it permission from the universe to say NO. You will save yourself a lot of frustration and weariness in the long run.

The Four of Pumpkins card is the four of pentacles card in the Ryder-Waite deck. Traditionally, the four of pentacles it's about holding on to things too tightly. It can be material things, a goal that isn't working, or values that no longer suit you. It's also about being miserly in spirit. Let it go.

If you're overburdened with tasks, let others take up some of the slack. Allow others to help you when they are willing, and don't put up a wall to shut them out if they offer you help. They have the same goal as you. And more than likely, they want the same end result. (See the sign for pumpkins on the other side of the fence?)  In other words: don't bear the burden alone when you don't have to!

That's all for now. I'm about to go see what the guys are doing, and watch a few cartoons with the MiniBeast before I settle in to write. To those who celebrate... Happy Lammas Day!

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