December, writing novels, childhood; all these things whip past before I can really grasp them. My two and a half year old nieces are in 5T shirts! They were just babies, tiny babies, born three months premature in 2010. Now you would have no idea; we just saw them at Thanksgiving, identical chunks except for a thin blue vein over bridge of the eldest’s nose. Also she’s a wee bit more cranky than her younger sister, which hearkens back to their earliest days. I spent a week with my sister and those preemies and even way back then #1 was a little more troublesome. Now they are nearly out of toddler clothes, how in the world did that happen?
Christmastime is firmly upon us, and I’m getting a few bits sorted, amidst the writing. The WIP is one of those novels unlike that eldest twin; this book is slipping from my fingers with an ease that December requires. If I’m going to write this month, it better be a novel that basically writes itself. One page of names constitutes my notes. There is no outline except for the playlist, and while tabs litter my window, it’s a stream of consciousnesses sort of manuscript. I’m spitting out a chapter a day so quickly I can barely grasp the joy of writing it. I really like this book, would love to savor it a little more, I really would. Christmas has other plans.
I wonder if that’s because when I edit this novel, I will go over with such a fine-toothed comb I’ll want to puke when it’s all said and done. I’m nearly to that point with The Timeless Nature of Patience, the last of the Alvin’s Farm series that will be published sometime this month. Reaching that stage with a manuscript, I vacillate between joy and weariness, just wanting to be DONE with it. The current novel-in-progress makes me itch to write it; every morning I sit with a giddy exuberance, like a kid eager for December 25th. I haven’t been this over the moon with a novel in a while, and it feels so good.
It’s like seeing my nieces and nephew at Thanksgiving; their childhoods, like my own kids’, is racing past. Baby photos grace my screensaver, but they aren’t those infants anymore. The twins were three pounds at birth, weighty for twenty-nine weeks gestation, but still no bigger than their mother’s hand. I saw them at a stage where they should have been cloistered away, an unexpected privilege I will never forget.
Sort of like blabbing about writing a novel. Where The Ball Is is about halfway through its confinement, nowhere near those metaphorical forty weeks. Books need every single moment to percolate, and maybe as in pregnancy, I just want it to be done, not thoroughly appreciating the process until it is far past. I think of those precious days watching two sisters lying together in an isolette, then to how they were tangled into each other on my parents’ floor just weeks ago; they are still as much a part of each other now as in the summer of 2010.
Time speeds by, every moment means something As I sit to edit Timeless Nature later today, I’ll try to not be sick to death of it, but attempt to recapture its beginning, in November of 2010 for NaNo, those baby girls home from the hospital and thriving. Just perspective, I guess. Life is fleeting. Best to make the most of today before it becomes tomorrow.