Rolling the Writer’s Die

Ohhh, scary, scare-ry! Bwa ha ha haaaa!

But let me first say, Happy New Year!!! Dragons! There be dragons!

Clearly I haven’t made a resolution to blog more regularly. It’s that blogging is not on the top priorities list. Firstly, it’s secondary writing, primary being the writing of fiction, poetry, the odd essay, etc. Also, before secondary writing comes paid contract work. Money = savoury meats & manuka truffle bars. So, of course. <wink>

I just turned 45! ^__^

This seems like a great writer-age to me. I’ve dealt with several demons and lesser imps, I’m not a raving alcoholic, I’ve numerous novels published (enough so I don’t worry that I won’t be able to write the next one, and even if I find that I can’t I can be satisfied that I’ve put out what I have) and my children have grown big and they’re almost ready to fledge. Awesome! Now it may be that Daughter proves a little elephant-natured and wish to stay in the matrilineal herd for a while, she’s still a teen after all. And welcome she is (as long as she does her share of work of course such as tipping over suitable trees, not raising too much dust when we migrate, stay away from crocodiles, etc.)– but I will be relaxed-mother, with more space for writer to stretch and scratch, and that is mighty fine indeed!

It’s also that time of year when the grant letters comes in. >_< Every autumn the writers outline their book-length project, gather up supporting material, dust of their cvs and submit their application. Most all of us are strong enough writers to be able to receive a grant. But there are limited funds, and only a small percentage will actually get one. Every new year we nervously wait by the mail slot, we wait to hear from a writer friend, Did you hear back? It came in? The Writer’s Die is rolling and the results arrive in an envelope. If only I could handle the die (and my cane sword!) like Zatoichi! (My mum isn’t a fan of the Zatoichi films. I have a sneaking suspicion it’s a class-based aversion but I didn’t push it. I’d much rather focus on getting her to stop buying bottled water!) It’s rather nervousing I must say. I’ve heard from a friend that they’re coming through the chutes. What will the die reveal?

Every year about this time I wonder, what will I do if I don’t receive a grant? I wonder if I could try to pick up some teaching gig. If I could somehow finally get a non-writing-related pay job thereby expanding my life experiences and would also serve as interesting research. But in my heart of hearts I want that grant really badly so that I can continue writing as I’ve somehow been able to do for close to twenty years. Relying upon one’s writing is not the most economically secure way to live. But it can also be said that economic security is a pipe dream. There are so many sad stories about people losing their jobs then their homes– and they had socially accepted and respected careers, jobs, etc. There are no guarantees.

I’m 45 years old and I’m doing what I love the most. This is not a gamble. This is a passion, joy and commitment. The grants come and go. But there will always be writers.

I hope to be writing when I’m 75! Or painting. Or knitting. Or drawing. Making something. At the very least making out!

I have no New Year’s resolutions. Every year is another year to write. To read, to think, to dream and love. To live well.

Blessings to you and the world.

Believe. (Definitely more X-files than anything else of course. <wink>)