This Little Piggy Made It Home

It’s Friday, and officially the last day of my “Staycation.”

As you saw yesterday, I got my office redone, and I’ve made some progress in some other areas.

I continue in my Goodreads challenges to read fifty books this year (I’m currently at 35 and have four in process), I’ve been reading Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life by Anne Lamott.

I’m enjoying the read, and enjoying what Lamott has to say about writing which is basically…write.

Well that and that first drafts are always shitty.

Her word, not mine, but also true (just like Hemingway said).

I’ll probably talk more about the book later, but I love how she just tells you to write what you know, whether it’s the elementary school cafeteria or what it was like waiting for a Polaroid to develop.

I like that because, as I’ve talked about before, life has given me a lot of source material.

A lot.

And by the way, a lot is two words.

You’re welcome.

So, in the midst of my clearing out my office I came across this set of books that we had when our youngest son was much younger. Probably about a year or so. It’s a cleverly packaged version of two small books telling the stories of Little Red Riding Hood and The Three Little Pigs. The accompanying house could be used to tell either story using the small figurines. We still have the three pigs. Somewhere in this house I’m sure we’ll one day find the wolf and Little Red herself.

I’m getting to a story here, I really am.

As a toddler our son liked to carry around small objects in his hand. He wouldn’t chew on them as many children do, he just liked to carry them. I’m pretty sure I remember my wife saying that one day he carried around a grape.

All day.

Back to the pigs.

For a long time he carried one of the three little pigs. I don’t recall which it was.

But I recall my horror one day when, for some reason, we were visiting Home Depot. I had our son in a cart and my wife went off to look for whatever it was we came to purchase.

The pig came along for the ride.

Somewhere in the garden section I heard the boy say “I lost my pig.”

If you’ve been a parent, you know the terror that such a phrase brings.

Where, oh where, could that pig have gone? We started our search.

But, before we did, I said a little prayer.

Then we began to retrace our steps. Finally, we found him.

I don’t remember how long the search took and how many times we had to retrace our steps, but finally, there he was.

No one had picked him up. He hadn’t been swept away.

All was right in the world again.

Was it an answer to prayer? That day, I surely thought it was.

And this week, it’s a reminder that I do, indeed, have plenty of stories to tell.

Writer’s Block be damned!

Is that story going to win me a Pulitzer?

Maybe not. But I have to start somewhere.

In other news that I’m excited to announce, I have been cast in the role of Santa in Tinker’s Toy Factory one of the shows that will be playing this November and December at Kings Dominion’s Winterfest.

That, among other things, is why I’ve taken this week to get organized on the home front.

I promised I wouldn’t always talk about it, but this little piggy is going to be very busy for the next few months.

Have a good weekend.

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No More Excuses

Now I’ve done it.

A recurrining writer’s procrastination meme shows writers needing to create the perfect space to write, the perfect temperature, the perfect…fill in the blank.

I’m nearly there.

For three days this week I cleaned and re-organized my home office. As of this writing I have a few minor details to complete, but let’s just say this is already working for me.

I have a place for my computer, a place to read and write, a place to create…or just color if the mood hits me. Remembrances of shows and events fill the walls and shelves…at least the space not taken up by books.

Books are so decorative, don’t you think?

Points for the reference.

I eliminated a good amount of stuff. Still, there came a point on Wednesday when I didn’t quite know what to do with things. There are a couple of bins of filing or shredding that need to be gone through, perhaps on the next inclement weather day.

And, there’s at least one box in the closet that I imagine my boys finding one day and asking “Why did Dad keep this crap?”

The office may not be perfect, but it’s pretty darned good.

Perfect would be changing the view out my window to the ocean and a little bell to ring for Jeeves to bring me another julep.

For what it’s worth, I have the bell. It’s a director’s gift from a show earlier this year.

I don’t necessarily believe that I need the perfect place to write.

I can write here in my home office. I can write in coffee shop. I can write on a break at the day job.

And I can write a beach house…if you’ve got a spare room.

The tricky part is setting aside that time when you won’t be disturbed.

Stephen King said:

“Write with the door closed, rewrite with the door open.”

On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft

I can shut the door and not complain that my office is a mess.

For now, at least.

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