Good Morning, Everyone.
Now that we are having coffee together, you can see that I am back from Beach Week(s). The ocean was glorious, the beach warm, the cottage perfectly cozy, and the days lazy and rejuvenating. We shared this little piece of heaven with our dear friends playing, eating, reconnecting, and collecting memories.
Now that we are back home, there are less than three weeks to get the house, yard, another boat, and garden in order before school begins. Items on my dreary Have-To-Do List circle in my head. Even though just two people are living in this one house, an awful lot of dust, dirt, mini-projects, and laundry pile up exponentially. I was hoping to get a chance to visit my grandbabies in South Carolina, but schedules are not cooperating, and I will have to wait until September.
Now that we are sipping coffee together, I can report that the garden exploded while we were away. Tomatoes and eggplant are ripening, and there is one last push of cucumbers and zucchinis. If weather and care coordinate, I hope to be eating a tomato or three each day until October.
Now that there is another cup of coffee in my hand, I can tell you that I have been in as high a gear as I can get writing my middle-grade novel. My goal is to have the very rough draft done before Labor Day so it can marinate during the busy first weeks of school. Once routines are established, I can tackle the editing process. I also need to find a critique group to bounce and lend an impartial eye to the final shaping of the story.
Small writing groups are essential cogs to the writing process- at least for me, it is. I had been so fortunate to be one of a three-woman writers group. We found each other during our studies toward an MFA in Creative Writing at Stony Brook/Southampton University. We have been cheerleaders, kind critique readers, and over these past few years, dear friends. I could not have finished my memoir, Hug Everyone You Know, without Jackie and Melinda. But life has a way of continually changing and challenging. Both of my writer pals had and are relocating from our corner of Long Island. Upstate New York and North Carolina are far distances to coordinate a meet up on a random weeknight. Although we will virtually share our pages, chat on messenger, and catch up on our adventures, it will not be the same as sitting down with these fine writers and sipping wine while discussing our projects and writer lives.
Antoinette Truglio Martin is the author of Hug Everyone You Know: A Year of Community, Courage, and Cancer. The memoir is a wimpy patient’s journey through her first year of breast cancer treatment.