Sunday, January 23, 2011
Friday, January 14, 2011
Friday, January 7, 2011
Lately, I've been thinking on the idea of kneading dough until it is ready, pouring a primordial lump of flour and buttermilk onto the counter and kneading it "until everything comes together." It is not a complicated formula. In fact, it isn't even a formula at all. Having made this recipe many times, I can tell you that the dough is sticky and cold, and it does take more than a tidy minute for it to transform into a loaf.
Writing is like this - in that the initial writing phase of a story or a novel-chapter (90%, I'd say) is difficult, messy, inconvenient and sometimes uncertain. But in order to create a beautiful loaf ready for the oven, or a story or part of a story to be ready to share, you have to work at it. You have to get your hands caked in the thick and sticky substance of the craft. Despite the mess, it will definitely be worth it.
It is a new year, and, as you can see, a fresh new blog. I hope to keep it fresh throughout 2011 and beyond. Thanks for reading!
I came by a word-a-day calendar for the new year. I’ve a passion for words; the more obscure the more deeply intrigued I am. One of my new little projects is to maintain a lexicon I created several years ago, and at the very least discovering or rediscovering words keeps me thinking. Thus, without further ado…
This week’s word rediscovery is lodestar (noun). According to Merriam-Webster a lodestar is “one that serves as an inspiration, model or guide… a star that leads or guides, in particular the North Star.” M-W also indicates that the word has its roots in Middle English (lode means course), and that Geoffrey Chaucer (The Canterbury Tales, Parliament of Fowles, etc) was one of the first to use the word when he wrote in the 14th century.
Appropriate, no? As yesterday, the 6th of January was Epiphany, the twelfth day of Christmas, and the day we celebrate the Magi finding the Christ child in Bethlehem. The lodestar could be construed as the brilliant star that guided them on their journey.
What strikes me about the idea of a lodestar is the image of light in the darkness… more particularly light in the midst of a bleak midwinter. I hope for that spark of creativity and hope in 2011. Happy writing!
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