Tuesday, March 9, 2010


Almost every day from the kitchen window I see bald eagles soaring above the bay. What a difference, the air filled with gulls and crows and then this large, creature soars above them all. It seems to float. An occasional wing flap when changing direction or gaining speed, but mostly coasting, so elegant, so relaxed, so effortless...

But I'm so wrong. Those stunning bald eagles soar so elegantly because of their strength. Because of their powerful muscles and ligaments and the whole of their complex physical structures working together.

Why do those eagles make me think of writing?

Because sometimes I simply want to be able to soar. For it all to be effortless. To write and edit and blog and research the industry and do all those things that would be good for my writing. One simple flap of my wings and I'd be doing it all.

But that's not how it works. Maybe some of us are born eagles, quickly ready to soar, but many of us might be more like sparrows, lots of busy wing-flapping, branch to branch, rarely in a straight line or an elegant arch. But some sparrows migrate as much as 2,600 miles... Not to shabby. We'll get there.

But still, I look at those eagles for inspiration.

What inspires you?

Goals for the week of 3/9/10 - stunningly similar to last week's goals... lots of flapping and flapping and bouncing from branch to branch...

YA novel
  • New draft incorporating reader feedback
  • Finish all web content
  • Tech plan for launch
Strengthening the center
  • Meditate every morning
  • Two walks in nature


  1. I was really inspired with your book list over at Anita's. I really love Murakami and I'm right in the middle of My Most Excellent Year. I really love Augie and it was also recommended to me by a young person in my life.

  2. I'm inspired by fellow writers...they make me feel not so crazy.

  3. Eagles are built to fly effortlessly. Do you think some writers are born to write effortlessly or at least more innately than the rest of the population?

    ROMEO, ROMEO is an eagle to me.

  4. How did I miss your post yesterday? I was looking for it. Maybe WIBIJ invaded my brain! I feel the same way about soaring. That's why I love drafting. It feels like soaring to me. But I am understanding the magic of revision, of steadily examining each turn of phrase.

    I second Jon's description of Romeo, Romeo. Nice post.

  5. Tina - Murakami was the best birthday gift years ago; it started a long relationship and spawned "Are you having a Murakami moment?"

  6. Anita - Yes! Fellow writers are fantastic. We get it why we look at life the ways we do. (Hm... weird sentence, but get it?)

  7. Jon - Does any good writer write effortlessly? Are there really such things as one-draft-wonders? I was a terrible student for the first half of high school b/c I thought smart people only wrote one-draft-wonders & therefore tried to do so - abysmally. Then I wised up and spent more time on my papers.

    You are way too kind. It took a long time to get Romeo, Romeo off the ground. It started as a screenplay and the Tim character was Pakistani.

  8. Heather - I love that drafting feels like soaring to you. What better sensation could that be to a writer?

    Love the Walden photos. What a great family! You must have had a blast.

  9. Incredible pictures. I just sat and stared at it for a while. We don't see eagles around my parts.

  10. Robert, I could definitely see the work that has gone into ROMEO, ROMEO. It still looks effortless. Gosh. If I were to ever proclaim that a one-draft-wonder really existed, I think a god or JK Rowling would swoop down and kill me, with a quill. I think I was meaning to say something along the lines of this: Aren't some people born with a writer's touch? A dancers grace. A flyers nerve. A politician's audacity. This are things that can no doubt be learned, but when I look at some of my favorite authors, I just think...writer. Always has been, always will. Now, this can obviously be taken to mean that I think they don't have to work very hard. So not the case. It took John Green well over three years to write Looking for Alaska, but when I read that book, I felt like he had just penned it and handed it to me and it was perfect. Rowlings work does not feel effortless. It feels over-worked, pained, and bred, but that's what I like about her writing. it has history to it. She convinces you of the existence of a world thousands of years old right in front of our eyes and we never knew. It's beyond brilliant. I mean, she created fricken family trees. Okay, whoa rambling. So, I am appreciative of the time you spent in Ro, RO. It certainly made the weekend I pumped into it very easy breezy and wonderful.

    Pakistani...hm...he could be Puck. Mhm.

  11. Jon--I love your comment "A dancers grace. A flyers nerve. A politician's audacity."

    Love. It.

  12. I'm a week late here. Somehow missed this post. I've been cross country skiing 3 or 4 days a week. Trails right out the door. Today I saw a Great Horned Owl--very cool and inspiring. And, it's staying light until almost 9 pm--that's inspiring too. I hope you reached last weeks goals and look forward to seeing what you've got going on this week!