Tuesday, December 4, 2012

A Walking Anthology

A few friends and I created a Writer's Group that meets every other week in the local coffee shop.  We don't practice our craft or critique each other's work but rather we simple talk about writing... or more specifically our challenges with writing.  We talk about all the things we love that usually make others simply glaze over.

Yesterday my friend Regina said during our group "Each of us is a compilation of personal stories.  We're all just walking anthologies."

You can tell my friend Regina is a writer.  Who else says awesome stuff like that over coffee?

For months I've been writing a memoir.  Writing it has been the easy part - or I should say downloading all of my memories of a specific block of time in a chronological fashion has been the easy part.  Now I'm at the hard part.  I'm at the part where you try to craft a story of your life using all the truths but pulling out themes, omitting the superfluous, creating a narrative arc, piecing it all together in an entertaining yet authentic way.  It's not easy and, quite honestly, it's a bit strange.  A bit strange to see your life as a series of stories, events, moments that when strung together form your history.  A bit strange to realize so much of what influenced and shaped you is a matter of not the event itself but your interpretation of it.  A LOT strange to come face to face with the "you" from 20 years ago and realizing how much you have changed and how much more perspective you have gained.

It's weird.  In a cool way.

This is also why I like to blog - to document my own life in words and pictures.  To make visual my own anthology.


So while all that crazy writing is going on, we're easing into the holiday like the Type B family we are.  While half of America was decorated to the gils Thanksgiving weekend and the Elf on the Shelf made his grand appearance to children everywhere, we're just getting started.

 "Jingles the Elf" only arrived two nights ago and unlike his elfy friends, isn't up to many antics.  He must be Type B too.

Rella's 5th Birthday party is this Friday night and since it is a North Pole PJ Party I better get crackin' on decorating this place! I think I just need to get through one event at a time - first there was Thanksgiving, then Rella's birthday, now I can focus on Christmas.  Plus, I feel like there is enough time.  Perhaps I'm deluding myself.

 We're planning on getting our fresh-cut tree this weekend. Never mind that we didn't "tag" any trees so who knows what we'll end up with.  But, that gamble is part of the fun.

 I have a stack of holiday cards waiting to be addressed on the table, letters to Santa ready to be mailed, and a calendar full of fun family activities and parties.  There is time enough for everything.  Bring it on!!


kario said...

I used to be one of those Type A holiday folks and you know what I learned? That even if I got "everything" done early (decorating, cards mailed out, shopping, wrapping, etc.), instead of using all that free time I had to relax, I found other things to put on my list that "had" to be done. The beauty of age is that we gain that wisdom - there is always enough time. I hope you relax and enjoy Rella's party this Friday before ramping up to Christmas. Eve's birthday is Thursday so I know how that goes.

PS - I love your writer's group. The notion of simply talking over coffee sounds sublime!

Alicia (Dr. Mom) said...

kari, i wish that you lived close enough so you could join us for our group - we'd learn so much from your wisdom and talent. happy birthday to Eve!!

Julie Ann Knapp said...

I agree! The brain-dump part is easy, it's the polishing that makes my head hurt! PS: The Knapp's still don't have an elf on the shelf!

Elizabeth said...

I'm meandering toward Christmas this year, too. And it feels fine.

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