About to enter the world of “The Shining”

Every writer who reads this is probably nodding his or her head. They know right where I am going with this. In my quest to write a book about writing, I am going to hole myself up in a cabin in the woods. Actually the woods in Cornwall where there is a lovely little writer’s retreat. A small bathroom, a view of trees and sky, I think some kind of fridge and cooking equipment, my laptop and me. (Hopefully a few outlets as well.) No wifi, but that’s okay. Everything I need is either in a word document, in a another book or two, or in my head.
old_martin_cabin_cropped

The trip is going to happen in a few weeks, and I’m both terribly excited, but also a bit intimidated. It’s so easy to say the words, “I’m writing a book,” or “Coming in (insert month or season) is MJ’s new book!” It’s easy to collect information for the book, contemplate what it may look like, or how it would be priced, and the fun of a book signing when it’s completed. The hard part, the truly hard part, is in between, when I turn on the laptop and actually get started. I have a few drafts of the opening chapters, a tentative table of contents, a thought or two of the acknowledgement section, and what I might like on the cover. I met with a very nice local publishing expert in the winter, and actually said I’d have the manuscript by mid-April. HA!
draft

I sometimes wonder if there is a career in “talking about writing a book.” If so, then I have that one down pat. I could do the book club circuit and talk about the book, go to Barnes & Noble and scout out a shelf spot for it under “local voices.” I could create cover after cover, and even start planning the sequel – all without having anything actually published. Oh, but the fun I will have.

As I prepare for my “Shining” experience (thank goodness there is no snow predicted!), I will keep updating this Joyful Writing blog. I will need to need help keeping scary thoughts at bay, reminders to not bring too much chocolate, suggestions on the right kind of 24/7 pajamas to pack, and a survey on whether or not I should bring a toothbrush. I’ll ask if anyone has any thoughts on a writing schedule, like, write for two hours and then go look for frogs, or write for three hours and then collect any inside spiders and shoo them outside. Here’s a good one: write for one hour and then watch a Brad Pitt movie.
brad

I think just thinking about writing in a cabin in the woods is a lot of fun, too!

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