Blogging has been slow lately, in part because I’m writing again. I’d been having a really difficult time figuring out how to proceed with this memoir-thing I’m writing. Memoir implies that the writer has some sense of perspective on events, or some inkling of what events “meant”. Since I’m still in the middle of this whole grief thing, I really didn’t feel that I had any idea of what my relationship with Patrick “meant” and hence, I was having a really tough time getting started.
So, inspired by Andy Goldsworthy’s method of just going outside and making something every day, I figured out a new (for me) method of working. I cut up a lot of slips of paper, and wrote a topic on each one. I folded them each up, and put them in a jar. Every day, I dump the slips out on the table, close my eyes and pick one. If it’s too hard, I put it back and pick another one. Then I write about the topic, print it out, and put it in a box. Among my “rules” are that I don’t go back and re-work them, I’m just piling them up and figuring that at some point I’ll either run out of slips of paper, or I’ll fill up the box — at which point, various common threads should be beginning to appear, and I can go back and shape these fragments into a book of some kind.
It hasn’t escaped me that this method is pretty similar to blogging. I started this blog over a year ago, in part to develop my nonfiction voice, and thinking that perhaps I’d try to write a nonfiction book about moving to Montana and building a garden. So in a funny way, the blog has taught me a method to work on this new book, but unfortunately it seems to be using the same energy that I had been putting into blogging. So, blogging may not be as frequent as in the past, but don’t worry, spring is coming, my seed orders have arrived, and there will inevitably be news from the garden in the near future.