I probably shouldn’t be this ecstatic over the fact that today is the first day of school for us. My daughter is starting her senior year of high school (gasp!) and my son is starting his sophomore year (not my baby!). I should probably be wishing that time would stand still. All of these moments of first and lasts are coming at me way too fast. But the truth is, I’m not wishing for time to stand still. I’ve loved sharing this summer with my kids and all the previous summers and other days too. But I’m trying to focus on the right now instead, and all the amazing things that have yet to happen.
Back to school week is always one of my favorite weeks of the year. It’s a time to start over, a time to refresh, a time to settle back into the routines I crave, and a time to refocus my goals and dreams. It makes me want to buy myself a pair of back-to-school shoes, a new backpack, and school supplies.
And so I did. A few weeks ago I hit the sales and bought myself a pair of fall ballet flats, a brown leather bag large enough to carry my laptop, and several 10 cent notebooks and pencils to start me on my way. Not long after I bought the flats, I returned them. I want to look good in flats, really I do. But the ones I picked out looked like grandma shoes, not cute city chic shoes. I’m more of a flip flip/ sandal type of girl anyway, until the leaves fall and then I’m definitely a boot girl. But whatever. I still have a cute new bag and all the writing materials I need to pack in it.
So where am I off too exactly? Well, as most of you know, I’m a freelance writer as well as a MG writer. And I work from home. This has it’s perks, but it also has its distractions. So…I’ve found a new place to work, maybe not every day but on some days. My town has combined their two tiny outdated libraries and built one colossal, amazing, up to date, complete with a fireplace and coffee shop library about five minutes from my house! The grand opening is next week. And I. Am. So. Excited! It will be full of meeting spaces, work spaces, techie stuff and all those books! So I’ve decided to make it my new home away from home while I write. What better way to immerse myself in the world of my new WIP than by writing amongst the books written by the fabulous authors who’ve come before me?
So this fall, in addition to the freelance project I’m working on, I’ll also be working on revisions for my current middle grade story—the one that caught my agent’s attention. And oh my gosh, I cannot wait to dive into those! It’s wonderful to have someone in my corner, who understands my story and knows how to bring it to the next level.
I always wondered what it would be like to have an agent. And I have to say, it’s every bit as great as I had hoped it would be. At the same time though, it’s not much different than having a really great critique partner. We have the same fantastic rapport, and I value her opinion just as much. The difference now, as I wait for her next round of notes, is that she (my agent) is someone in the publishing industry who knows the editor’s tastes and the types of stories they are acquiring. But the anticipation is the same as when I’m waiting to hear what my CP thinks of my chapters.
I would be lying if I said that my reason for being so excited about the new school year is unrelated to me getting to spend uninterrupted hours writing and revising. It definitely is. Even though my kids are older, they are home—in my work space. And when my husband isn’t traveling for work, he works from home too. That has made for a very crowded house this summer. So yes, hooray! The first day of school is today and I get to write for several hours in peace!! Will I even know how to do that??
And so my kids have a chance to start fresh this week and so do I. We all do actually. We all have the opportunity to make a new plan, refocus our goals, and commit (or re-commit) to the whatever it is that we’re passionate about.
So if you haven’t already, go on out and grab a 10 cent notebook. Write down what it is you hope to accomplish this fall. Maybe even start a new story. Kids all over the world will be starting anew. Maybe that’s a sign for all of us as well…we need to do that same thing too! 🙂