Posted by: Teresa | November 22, 2009

Life is Not a Race

The Beach Belches Kelp

I keep having to tell myself that I’m not in a race, I’m just here to live my life.  There is no reason to stress over not writing as much as I would like to or not reading that huge pile of books that keep calling me.  My daughter has center stage at the moment.  I need to enjoy this time with her while I can.  A day will come when she will come home and lock herself in her room for hours on end.  Those will be productive days for me.  Right now, she loves her mommy and I’m eating it up.  Two years olds are a needy bunch.  They want want want, but they need help help help.  Constantly.  We play games, mostly these involve drinking pretend tea that she is always making too hot.

I’m still reading Scorch Atlas by Blake Butler.  I’m enjoying it, he paints ugly pictures with pretty words.  No happy endings.

I ordered two issues of Monkeybicycle.  It gives me a reason to stalk the postman.

I am still working on a piece to send to the Prairie Fire contest but time is ticking away and it’s not where I want it to be.  I’m hoping that I’ll get a burst of energy and time enough to use that energy, soon.  It’s 9:30pm at the moment and this is later than I’ve been staying up lately.  Two year olds are nothing if not exhausting.  I usually go to bed right after she does these days.  Pathetic, right?

I’m not expecting anything to be published until Dec.  I should have something up at Boston Literary Mag, who has a new chapbook format coming out for the shorter pieces (under 250 wds), and possibly in the first issue of Negative Suck.

I finally finished a scarf I’ve been working on for ages.  I chose a half-double stitch for it which makes it warm and strong but each row is about a quarter inch so it was more time consuming than I expected.  She better like it!!

Folded Word has two chapbooks coming out, like, NOW!  It’s very exciting.  Jessie Carty with The Wait of Atom and Mel Bosworth with When the Cats Razzed the Chickens.  These are available as e-books or as beautiful hand crafted pieces of art, that for an extra dollar you could have signed by the author.  WORTH IT!

So, I’m going to stop feeling guilty for not keeping up with my writer friends that have a million stories coming out everyday, chapbooks and popular blogs.  I’m sure that my daughter will thank me eventually.



  1. It’s funny how, when you compare yourself to others, you never really quite feel you are doing enough, even if you’re laden with bylines and honors. I often find myself envious of the achievements of my child-free friends, so I can relate. But it sounds as though you have achieved a wonderful balance in your life–no small feat for a professional with young children!

  2. Thanks Cynthia! I’m still working on the balance. I am lamenting the loss of the days my daughter took 3 hour naps. Boy, those were good writing days.

  3. Kudos to you young lady for having your priorities in order. I hang my hat right along side you and have tossed the mantle of writing daily on the floor. It is a good day if I log future story/poetry ideas in my journal or Googledocs. My words will be with me forever – my daughter is mine on borrowed time and I love her more than any publishing credit. True friends will be there when you and I emerge out of the woodwork.

  4. Well done, Captain Houle of the S.S. Teresa.

  5. Thanks for the comments Jen and Mel. You guys are solid.

  6. Thanks for the plug 😉

    • thanks for publishing my story!

  7. Great stuff, Teresa. I constantly question why I write and almost always feel like it’s a very selfish thing b/c it takes away so much of my focus from my wife and kids and my job and all the other things I used to care so much about before focusing on writing about a year ago. It’s such a tough thing to figure out. Iit makes me happy to write sometimes but wow does it exact a toll, always seemingly out of nowhere. d

    • oh, don’t even get me started on feeling selfish for writing! Moms breed guilt right after giving birth!

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