New Baby in the House

I wasn’t ready.  But it wasn’t completely my fault.

Due to a slight mechanical malfunction (okay, not that slight — my car was not road-safe and it took two weeks to fix), I came home from the 82nd Annual Gathering of the Thoreau Society about a week later than I’d expected, and that ate up my precious preparation time.  So July 26 rolled around faster than I was ready, and so she came home to an unprepared house (and a less-prepared-than-I-liked me).

Today is the seventh day of Life with Louisa May Alcatt, and I truly adore her.  I think the feeling is mutual, because if I leave her sight, this adorable ball of fur turns into a rhythmically-screaming banshee.

But it’s funny how quickly I’d forgotten what life was like two years ago, when I brought home her big brother, A. Bronson Alcatt.  The climbing on my shoulders, the pouncing on the laptop keyboard, the wrapping around my ankles as I’m trying to keep a straight face on Zoom.

How did I forget all this?

I forgot because it’s worth every second.

Slice of Life Writing ChallengeThis post was created as part of Two Writing Teachers’ Slice of Life Challenge

You can view other writers’ contributions this week via the comments here.

Life Update

I’m Karen J. McLean, and here is your Karen’s Life Update for the morning of Thursday, March 24, 2022:

I heard the birds greet the dawn this morning, the first time this year. I am usually at my desk at dawn, and today was the first time they sang and I heard them. Spring is here, regardless of the weather forecast.

Trying out a new morning routine here, Chez McLean. Doug left Piper in the kitchen when he left for work. As she continues to age, it has become pretty much impossible for me to be at all productive with a geriatric border collie trying to boss me around because she’s bored.

I love her to bits, and I also have things to do — like online meetings and writing and stuff that requires what little concentration I can muster.

My plan is to spend quality one-on-one time with her when I go collect her after lunch. So if this works, it will be beneficial to both of us.


Currently Listening To: Duran Duran’s “Rio” on Apple Music’s ’80s Dance Party Essentials Playlist

Currently Reading: Sarah Polley’s Run Towards the Danger.

Current Hat: Brown Walden Pond ballcap featuring Thoreau’s sketch of a scarlet oak leaf.

Current Writing Project: A short memoir piece about the summer of 1989, to be submitted to my local critique group and then on as part of my application for a Canada Council grant.


Day 24 of the March SOLSC 2022

This post was created as part of Two Writing Teachers’ Slice of Life Challenge

You can view other writers’ contributions via the comments here.

Confessions of a Creative Book Club Ghost

Way, way back in the mid-1990s (you know, before the turn of the century), I met a woman named Kathy in our local writers’ group.  I’m not sure which one of us stopped attending first, but we sort of lost touch for about ten years.

The city in which I live is not terribly large, though, and once you have met somebody with a similar interest as you, you tend to know what they are up to until meet them again.

Such was the case with me and Kathy.  And I am glad, because somewhere around the Autumn of 2010, she sent me an email out of the blue.  Kathy was forming a “book club for creative types,” beginning with Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way, and would I be interested in joining?  I immediately said yes.

Since then, our Artists’ Circle has been studying two or three books together each year.  Well, the others have.  I have a tendency to join in with a great deal of enthusiasm.  But by Week 2, I am behind.  By Week 3, I stop sending my weekly check-ins in a misguided attempt to “catch up first”, and by Week 4 …  Let’s just say I have yet to complete one of our twelve-week book studies.

Well, Gentle Reader, it’s that time again.

This week, we are beginning to read The Hero is You (Kendra Levin) together.  This is the group’s second time working through the book, but my first, because … Well, you know. 😉

It’s a really neat book, with thought-provoking exercises and lines that make you think, and I enjoyed the idea behind it — likening the development of a writer to The Hero’s Journey.  But I can’t help but chuckle as I sit here reading the subtitle: “Sharpen Your Focus, Conquer Your Demons, and Become the Writer You Were Born to Be.”

(Can we just say I’m a late bloomer?  Second time lucky?)

So after I read some of my fellow Slicers’ posts in the next hour, I will settle in with the book and begin the journey again, side by side with my fellow creatives.

And now — thanks to making myself accountable to you, Gentle Reader — I am looking forward to finishing the journey this time.


This post was created as part of Two Writing Teachers’ Slice of Life Challenge

You can view other writers’ contributions via the comments here.