- Ann Schwarz
- I'm a published author of short fiction for kids and adults. I have an MFA in Creative Writing from Spalding University. I'm a former content writer for Spirit and Truth publishing on their Living the Word series. I've also worked as a paid book reviewer and as a student editor for The Louisville Review literary magazine. I'm a wife and mom to two great kids, three dogs, and a cat. I love books, movies, gardening, kids, and animals.
Tuesday, July 1, 2014
Today I found myself emulating my turtle, Ted. She wanders about in the mornings watching the world around her from the safety of her asparagus box. This is her most active time of the day. After a few hours if there are no bugs to be found and no fresh food is lying about she buries herself in the dirt where it is cool and stays that way for the rest of the day.
That doesn't mean I looked for bugs this morning or gave myself a dirt bath. I don't eat bugs ever on purpose. Occasionally one will fly in my mouth and down my throat before I know what's hit me and I tell myself I've just inhaled some extra protein for the day while I'm choking. When I dig in the dirt it's usually to plant something.
But this morning I got up and took care of my animals, made sure my kids got some breakfast and enjoyed the people around me. Once I'd eaten breakfast myself, I watched an anime' movie directed by Hayao Miyazaki with my kids called Castle in the Sky. Then we went to summer reading time at the library and came home. I checked my garden for goodies ready to be picked. Scowled at the tomato the bugs or wild life partially ate before it was ripe because it was a nice big tomato. Then went back inside where it was cool and read my book and partially watched the World Cup game.
I didn't do much work. But I enjoyed my day. Sometimes you have to veer from the normal path and ignore your daily schedule. It doesn't mean I love my writing any less and if things go as they have the last few days my head will be teaming with ideas and snippets of story when it's time for everybody else to go to bed. I'll write down the snippets of dialogue or scene in my notebook and then I'll go to sleep feeling I've written at least a little bit. Much as I love my stories I do need a respite from them on occasion.
Sticking to a daily schedule helps keep me grounded and gives my life some balance. It also forces me to be accountable each week on my productivity. But sometimes I have to take a break from it. In order to make my fictional world real I have to take time to relax and enjoy the real world. I do that best by spending time with my kids and playing once in a while like they do. It reminds me of what I've got and how blessed I am when life gets back to being busy and frantic once summer wanes. When a loved one in my family recently suffered a life altering health problem I was reminded again of how quickly and suddenly life can change. It made me glad that I've been trying to be more conscious of living in the moment instead of straining so much for the future. Sometimes the present is all we've got. So take a breath and enjoy the longer lazy days of summer and give yourself permission to be a turtle and just do what you want for a day. The next day will be time enough to tackle that to-do list and get back to that schedule.