September is often a time of change and beginnings. Around here, it’s the start of a new school for my son, new activities for my daughter, and a lot of travel for new projects for my husband.
September is also a time of harvest. A time to gather the ripened fruits and grains of the year, savour some, store some for the winter, and collect seeds for next year’s planting. A time to look at the fields and consider which need rotation, which need rest, and which are ready for winter crops.
This year, I find I’m more in harvest mode than new beginnings mode.
Last year was fruitful: In September, the first Writing Circle gathered and set the tone for a programme that I am both proud of and honoured to facilitate. Spring and summer saw two more groups assemble, each time with faces both familiar and new, and each time with writing that was vibrant and so very exciting to see emerge.
As for my own writing, I filled 8 journals with freehand musings. How many words? The calculation is interesting to me: approximately 8 journals x 200 pages per journal x 20 lines per page x 6 words per line = 192,000 words. Surely there must be a few worth keeping from that hoard. (To compare, a typical novel is about 90,000 words, probably preceded by many thousands of others that didn’t make the cut).
As my family settle into their new routines (and I help them navigate those transitions), I have decided to take time to tend to the past year’s writing harvest. Time to sort, mill, mix, knead and proof those words. I’m still enough of a scientist to know that energy can neither be created nor destroyed. It only changes forms, and the transformation I’m choosing is from generating raw material and excitement to working with what I have in hand. So many words. Perhaps each is a grain.
It’s time to let the fields rest, so that come 2016, the soil will be full of nutrients for Writing Circles to come. Because it is not the season for sowing, I have decided to postpone this autumn’s sessions of Spilling the Ink and Continuing the Craft. But please stay tuned to hear what offerings will be available in the new year.
In the meantime, what will you be harvesting this autumn?