Yes, it’s September. We’ve all had our fill of long, lazy summer days and are more than ready to dive into fall schedules now… right? Ha! If you’re anything like me, you’re staring in disbelief at the calendar and whimpering, “What happened to June, July and August?” I’m still in mañana mode.
Our summer baskets continue to bloom happily, beckoning me out onto the deck and into the garden. I’m not ready to settle down indoors and face the many tasks I’ve unintentionally ignored for the past several weeks.
The baskets were planned for their hardiness and cheery colour, with plants that included long-lasting shasta daisies, hardy geraniums, trailing golden bidens and tiny white bacopa. With a little slow-release fertilizer and a drip system of watering that my husband concocted, they’ve survived my normal summer neglect surprisingly well. I was quite pleased with them… until last weekend’s discovery.
On our recent journey over the Gray Creek Pass, somewhere around the 5000-foot level, we came across lush drifts of gentle colour and occasional splashes of vibrancy. Unplanned and untended, those wildflower displays rivalled the most beautiful of domestic gardens and far exceeded anything a gardener of my calibre could have created.
They made me wonder at the point of all my spring gardening efforts at home. That led to thoughts of other forms of neglected creativity, such as my well-intentioned writing efforts. Oh, I have been writing — a little — sometimes working on my new(ish) W.I.P. and other times fiddling with revisions on an earlier manuscript, but the results haven’t been very satisfying. Only a short piece that I wrote in a burst of unplanned enthusiasm feels like it has any real value, and I wonder why.
Maybe… is it because I try too hard to force the words I believe ought to go well together, instead of allowing wildness to invade the page?
This has nothing to do with plotting versus pantsing, but everything to do with inspiration and the freedom of true creativity. I’ve concluded that I can’t tell my brain what to dish up; I need to let it do its own work. As I slowly slip back into September’s familiar routines, I’m going to experiment more with free writing, and see if my creativity will respond favourably.
Does a new season provoke you to try something new? What are your September goals?
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