I Begin

Some time ago, at the prompting of a friend, I began writing a narrative account of the strange things that have happened in my life–curious coincidences, intuitions that mattered, even instances of what could be called spectral visions. As I begin this blog, I’ve got an outline, a conclusion, a first chapter with part of a second, and a circle of  friends (veteran writers among them) urging me on.

The book is called Choosing Miracles: A Memoir of Voices, Visions, and Angels. 

That’s what I’ve got.

What I don’t have in place is my own internalized identity as a writer. And I can never seem to get, find, or create the time, space, and energy to write given my work as a full-time freelance proofreader. (These, I’m sure, are related.)

Yes, of course I should make my own work my priority and turn to the moneymaking jobs after the day’s writing is done. Yes, of course I should write every day, no matter what. It doesn’t happen. My proofreader self crowds out the writer in me every time. I’ve got to get to that job on the desk so I can submit the invoice so I can pay the bills. And by the end of my day looking for typos, bad word breaks, bad base alignments, and inconsistent heads, the last thing I want to do is mess with words–even my own.

So I go to the park and look for birds. I go to the movies. I watch TV. I do things that lift my eyes off the page or out of the computer and I watch colors, shapes, and things that move. It’s wonderful!

This blog is an attempt to deal with the conflict between my work as a proofreader and my work as a writer. (There are other conflicts I’m aware of that are getting in my way, but I’ll talk about them later.) I’m beginning here. I’m creating this place where I can come and go casually, on coffee breaks or when I’m shifting from one proofreading job to another, and jot things down. Who knows what it’ll turn into?

Now it’s time to work on the quarterly macroeconomic forecast for New Jersey.

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13 thoughts on “I Begin

    • How perfect that you’re the first person to comment on my first blog post, Janet, since you were the very friend who encouraged me to write down my stories that day we were gathered at Louise’s. I remember how the late afternoon sun streamed in her windows and what a soft golden light it was.

      Thank you.

  1. This is exciting! Maybe I’ll follow your lead. I’ve always wanted to write a book or a blog or something but have every excuse imaginable.

  2. And now I want to know how New Jersey’s economy will be doing. Oh, the suspense…

    It’s great to see you here. I’ll put a link on my blog right away.

  3. Finally, finally, after a weekend of almost nonstop Quaker business, weighty phone calls and thorny e-mail exchanges and committee agenda-making in between sleep, meals, household chores and the blessed relief of worship, I’ve finally found the time to look at your new blog, Carol, and it strikes me as a great idea, because it will involve us, your friends who believe in your gifts and your calling to write your memoir, in cheering you on. If time passes and you don’t post with sufficient frequency, I hope we’ll all have the temerity to ask “What’s going on? Carol, are you using your energies up on proofreading jobs? Have you run into writer’s block? Can we help?”
    I love the name of your blog, and your masthead photograph. Is that of the coast of Greenland, or Baffin Land, or what? I want to go there myself, only in my astral body so that I don’t damage that fragile greenery!

    • Thank you, John. I had a longish Quaker day myself yesterday, but I’m sure nothing to match your weekend! As to the masthead photograph, I have no idea what that’s a picture of. It came with WordPress’s template and not only did I like the typeface and design of the template, I liked the picture, too.

      In order for me to put my own photo on the masthead–say, of Central Park–I’d have to give WordPress $30 a year. I may decide to do that eventually, but for now the mysterious landscape will do.

  4. I love it!
    Will watch this space.

    Another “upgrade” WordPress offers is $30 per blog to remove ads from your site. WordPress.com by default currently shows ads to visitors but not to the blogger, who won’t see them if logged in. If you want to see, log out of WordPress and visit the site.

    You may not want to pay to remove them but I always point this feature out to people because bloggers typically have no idea the ads are there and you may or may not have noticed this is also true on on Among Friends!

  5. By the way, if you like, I may soon be able to host a WordPress site for you and if this is the case, it would be the same except you could change the template and of course skip the ads. I will keep you posted.

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