Thursday, December 24, 2009

My Year of Hopefulness - Balancing Writing and Living in Alabama

Writing has a funny little dichotomy: it is a mostly solitary activity whose content is greatly influenced by social interaction. That balance between living life and writing about it can be a tricky one to manage, particularly if you write on a part-time basis while working at another full-time job. And yet, that balance is critical to creating a body of writing that is poignant and relevant. Without the social interaction piece, writing becomes flat and dull.

This week I'm in Florida with my sister, brother-in-law, and niece. They are packing up on Christmas afternoon to head to Alabama to see his family and I was planning to stay here at their home to study for the GRE and to write. Yesterday at lunch, we started talking about the possibility of me going to Alabama along with them. As it turns out, that ride will give me a lot of time to study and I'll have my own toasty bedroom to write and learn GRE vocabulary words until my heart's content.

At first, I immediately thought that there is just no way I can go to Alabama. I have a to-do list that needs doin'. And it's so much time in the car, and I'm already traveling to Fort Lauderdale to celebrate the New Year with friends. I mean, I need my rest!

And then I thought, well, what exactly is it that I'm resting up for? Should I stay home alone with my GRE book and my computer, or would it be better to be with people I love and get all of my work done, too? With that thought, what other choice was there? Staying home alone just felt like a horribly empty option, especially at this time of year. All I could think of was an image of the Grinch high up in his home, alone for the holidays. Life was a lot sweeter when he came down off his mountain, and I bet his writing was better, too.

For me, the holidays are about family and friends and dashing here and there and loving it. My writing is about that, too. So my books, my laptop, and my family are hitting the road to Sweet Home Alabama in about 24 hours to see what we can find. If nothing else, it's got to make for some interesting writing and fun holiday memories.


runner52 said...

Christa..Merry Christmas . I hope 2010 is your year

Christa said...

Hi runner52! Thanks so much for your well wishes, today and everyday. Merry Christmas!