Sunday, 6 September 2015

A garden requires patient labor and attention. Plants do not grow merely to satisfy ambitions or to fulfill good intentions. They thrive because someone expended effort on them. --Liberty Hyde Bailey

I am back in the groove. Once again, I am consistently putting aside a few hours each morning for writing, or something related to writing. I have pulled out different pieces and reread them, pondering their strengths and needs and what I should do next. I have two complete novels and three novellas, as well as a sequel, a young adult and a woman’s fiction in the works. These last two are the pieces I play with to hone my craft. It feels good to revisit all of these and ponder revision and creation.

Today we ventured into our backyard. It very much resembles a rich forest in the middle of a dust bowl. We have not touched it despite its neglected state. British Columbia has been in drought conditions for months and we did not want to traumatize the vegetation with our amateurish strokes. The rain fell freely this past week and the leaves perked up. We felt confident that it was a fine time to connect directly to this new land of ours.

We started hesitantly. Some plants looked quite nice and merely needed a clip or two. Some looked a little on the dry side and need more time to absorb the water before we decide how best to come at them. But, there were a few that were clearly out of control. They were difficult to prune as their branches were entwined intricately and to cut one did not necessarily release it. You had to trace back through the weave and snip multiple places before it was truly clear cut.

I could not help but think about how much an arborist’s task is like that of an author. I have pored through my writing this week. I did a quick edit on Raven’s Path and Love Denied and am pleased that there was little trimming to be done.  The sequel to Raven’s Path is suffering fatigue and needs to sit awhile and gather strength until I decide how best to approach it. The novellas need a good pruning, they are interlaced and must be approached with an eye to maintaining the integrity of all three—a terrific task for a rainy day.

I imagine the arborist who faces an empty lot is excited to be able to envision, design and create. That is how I feel as I look at my YA and WF. Their seeds have germinated and it is time to decide where they go. I am optimistic that the landscape of my life will be richer for their creation. Regardless of whether they become breath-taking arboretums, or rugged reminders of hard work, I know I will enjoy them. The words will be the soil that sifts through my fingers, their story the fruit of love’s labour.


  1. What a beautiful analogy! Rose, you're so right about the role of "arborist" when it comes to editing! Thanks for that image. It's one I'll keep. ;-)

  2. Yay! So glad you're working again! I agree with Zan, it is a beautiful analogy.