February 28, 2022
Despite February’s brevity, the month has felt endless this year. Not that I’m in a hurry for time to pass; there never is enough of that. My problem could lie in the bone-chilling dampness that causes me to crave warmth. (Note, I said warmth, not heat. July and August are another story altogether.)
First on my mind as I post today is the reprehensible threat the Ukrainian people face. I want to express my admiration for their strength and offer my prayers for peace.
My memoir project consumes the bulk of my busy-thinking these days. In late January I received great feedback from my Vancouver Manuscript Intensive mentor Mark Winston. Over Zoom, we discussed ways to cull the narrative from 88,153 words to 75,000 (or less) and the need to shorten some chapters.
So, most afternoons I layer up, log in and search for the superfluous bits. I’m happy to say I’ve exceeded my shaving goal and the manuscript word count currently sits at just over 72,000. And after deleting six entire chapters, that number has gone from a total of 21 to 29.
Hmm. Fewer words, more chapters. Looks like progress to me.
February’s TWS Community Workshop, The Braided Essay, facilitated by Sonja Larsen on Sunday the 27th was amazing. I found it engaging and relevant to my current manuscript and a source of inspiration for future projects. Thank you Sonja.
This month, I struggled to live up to challenge two: one photograph and one sketch, but did squeak them in with a week to spare.
Helleborus ‘Walhelivor’ – Ivory Prince
Hellebore are one of my favourite perennials and I have several in my garden but the eager bloomer Ivory Prince is the only variety whose name I can remember. All beautiful, all low maintenance, this elegant specimen braving winter to show off its true colours deserves an early nod of appreciation.
I chose to sketch Flint this month since his birthday is February 12th and he has shared 14.5 of his 16 years with us. While he may have lost most of his hearing, several of his teeth, and some of his strength, he’s still both sweet and salty, and loves his daily treat and his people.
And his people love him.
Number three of my self-imposed challenges, tracking my reading in 2022 can be a scramble. Reading serves different purposes for me and most often I put one book down to immediately pick up another, whether digital or print. This month I found it a small test to recollect the specifics but here goes …
Books in order of completion this year, as of February 28th:
- Octavia E. Butler. (1979). Kindred
- Jason Reynolds. (2016). Ghost
- A, Conan Doyle. (1892). The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
- Gurjinder Basran. (2010). Everything Was Good-Bye