Monday, August 20, 2012

Starting Again

Post by Jenny

For weeks, my local discount stores have been bursting at the seams with superhero lunch boxes, bins of crayons, and dorm-sized refrigerators. Flip-flops and swimsuits are on clearance, replaced by sweaters and wooly socks. No matter how much I might want to turn back the clock to gain another few weeks of vacation, I can’t. School starts this week, and everyone in my house is trying to shift gears accordingly.

Back-to-school time has me thinking about the difference between starting over and starting again. Although my boys go through the same routines each August—school supply shopping, getting their schedules, meeting teachers—they aren’t starting over. If they were, they’d be back in kindergarten every year. Instead, they are starting again, hopefully with most of the stuff they’ve learned in prior years still floating around somewhere in their heads.

I (barely) kept up with blogging this summer, but as far as other writing goes, I took time off. A lot of time. I didn’t plan to, and whenever I read about how many of you were working so hard, I felt guilty and toyed with the idea of kicking things up a notch. For a variety of reasons, I didn’t, which left me with the heavy feeling that the next time I sit down at my desk to write, I will be starting over. Again.

But watching students from elementary to college preparing for school makes me realize that I’m not starting over, either. I still have all the words I’ve written—no matter how dusty they might be now—the classes I’ve taken, the knowledge I’ve gained. And my brain never really takes the summer off, even when it’s a case of the spirit being willing but the flesh being lazy. I’m always thinking about my next step, and whether it will take me forward, backward, or sideways. So Tuesday, when my boys start again, I will, too. I might even buy myself some new writer’s supplies to make it official.

Is the end of summer a productive time for you?


Name: Luana Krause said...

Summer is a crazy time for writers. I had an epiphany this year and realized that I needed to stop blogging so that I could write. Blogging and facebooking had taken up a lot of my time, so I've taken a break from my blogs and and focusing on my own writing projects. I'm entering some contests and working on short stories. It's about time.

Jenny said...

Good for you, Luana. I enjoy your blogs but know how time-consuming they must be. And I'm not on facebook for that very reason. Best of luck with your projects!

Name: Luana Krause said...

Jenny: Thanks. I miss my blog, but I feel free now that I'm not tied down to a blogging schedule.

mare ball said...

sometimes blogging can feel like work. Summer does bring many distractions. I love the idea of getting some new "school supplies" to start the fall writing process!

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