I thought I had a book in me ready to print until this past week at the Institute for a Whole Bunch of Cool Things in Rhinebeck, NY. About 35 of us sat with the book we were born to write on our laptops, in spiral notebooks and binders.
There are educators, entrepreneurs, parents, preachers, therapists, teachers, life coaches, life savers, strivers, survivors, even a couple of lawyers.
People from every walk of life, with all kinds of stories, baggage, dreams, and hopes gathered together in an attempt to help transform lives.
How often does this happen?
Wait, what am I saying? This happens in the yoga studio all the time. Classes are filled with individuals on journeys hoping to change themselves and ideally the world at large.
Maybe change isn’t the right word. Understand? Expose? Enjoy? Accept?
How hard could it be to write a book to assist in this transformation?
Sure is a lot harder than I thought.
I found out I don’t know much about putting a book together. Don’t get me wrong, I understand basic rules of grammar and sentence structure but; developing a hook, crafting a book proposal, establishing a platform, these are all things that are so jumbled together now that I can barely remember my middle name.
It gets worse with this simple question:
“What is your book about in three sentences?” Now I’m f*cked.
It turns out I don’t know much about anything these days, much less what I’m writing about. I’m not sure I can explain the difference between yoga and yodeling.
The only way I can describe my new vegetative state is by the phrase “Word Salad”, a somewhat disorganized string of incoherent ideas.
Yoga, kids, creativity, teaching, dancing, telling stories, humor, sins, virtues, acceptance?
I pride myself on tossing together some pretty good salads but there is little chance Panera will put them on the menu.
Before anyone thinks I’m upset, in a funk, depressed or miserable, fear not.
Three years ago, I’d have been so discouraged I’d have skipped the tenth vegetarian buffet at the workshop and gone out for a burger and a Bud.
This time I stayed put.
This is where I am in my writing career, right here, right now.
Breath in. Breath out.
People spend years putting together recipes for restaurants and cook books. They know kitchen tricks that a lot of us don’t. It’s their profession, bailiwick, forté.
Just because I want to join in their professional circles doesn’t necessarily mean it will happen when I want it to happen.
We have to know what we don’t know first. Then we get back to work, measuring, mixing, adding, whisking, beating and learning.
Acceptance of where we are right now, is the bowl holding all of the ingredients. Let the feelings of inadequacy or disappointment hang around until the meal is over and then toss what’s left into the compost.
Learn from the aromas and flavors around us. Good or bad, they don’t linger long.
Namaste- it’s okay, time to play, it’s not a bad day, thoughts ricochet, come what may, just might end up with a book someday!