What is there to write about if I’m trying to get published, but no publisher will publish something already published, even if only posted to my humble little blog? I can’t give excerpts of my current completed work. Nor would I dare give excerpts of any works-in-progress—I’m superstitious about sharing too much before I consider it complete. I suppose I could use my writer’s blog as a journal, but unless it tells a good story, is a journal entry of any interest to anyone but me? Besides, if I spend too much time blogging, how will I ever have time to do my actual writing?
But with the start of a new school year (and, thus, a new work-year for me), I feel the need to announce to the world (or all you five, amazing, loyal readers), what exactly I’ve been up to all these years between disbanding the online health and wellness magazine I used to run, and now. So maybe that’s the best use of my writer’s blog.
Starting in 2015, I moved from Texas to Connecticut with a six- and eight-year-old, and turned an old eighties-style house into a modern haven, in which I nurtured my children into healthy and confident twelve- and fourteen- year olds. One just started high school (today!), and the other, 7th grade.
Then I developed adenomyosis, a form of endometriosis
Then I developed adenomyosis, a form of endometriosis, with alarming symptoms and a devastating prognosis. But instead of giving in to the threat of having my uterus taken from me, I went into what I do best, research mode. And a year later, I reversed the symptoms, got back to health, and started a Facebook Group for other women who would like to know how to heal from adenomyosis and endometriosis, without the use of synthetic hormones or surgery.
In the meantime, when my father showed signs of emotional abuse toward my daughter at a family gathering, I began to learn some things about him that I’d never comprehended before. And over the course of many months, when it became clear he had no intentions of stopping his abuse nor apologizing for his actions, he and I, and consequently my mother, became estranged. For many more months afterwards, I fell into a depression as I grieved the loss of my parents, shed an old self, and finally respawned.
Through all that, I pushed back the boundaries of the forest encroaching on my backyard that had long been neglected by the previous two owners. In its place, I built a Zen garden. I also resurrected the existing garden that someone, several owners previous, had once so lovingly tended, and I planted a new butterfly garden that several monarchs and hundreds of bees visited this summer.
In the meantime, I completed a memoir.
As part of my respawning, I rekindled my first passion in life (before my father took it away from me), and made sure to write every day. (Just not on a writer’s blog). I had a few poems published (online), I started a Writer’s Group and led it for a year, and I completed a memoir. Maybe I should have made that announcement a few months back, when I had completed the final draft. But I jumped right into the notoriously harrowing process of querying, which took just as much of my time.
As I write in my query letter, the memoir is about how “scientific investigation told me what my subconscious knew all along—that my body had been shaped by trauma I’d long since forgotten, and the only way to heal was to expel the one toxin that kept triggering me.”
But seriously, how can you sum up what a memoir is all about, in just one sentence? Yes, it’s about the link I discovered between “Adverse Childhood Experiences” (ACEs), aka, in my case, emotional abuse I suffered as a child, and autoimmune disease. That is, my thyroid condition, endometriosis and food sensitivities.
But it’s also about how you can be stressed and not even realize it. It’s about opening your eyes after being blinded by the spell of narcissism. It’s also about learning to feel all of your emotions, even the difficult ones, so they don’t metastasize and smother the good feeling ones. And its about healing through gardening and meditation and self-compassion (and sometimes a little medical marijuana).
That’s a lot to put into a one-page query letter that also highlights my writing experience and target audience. I hope I’m doing a good job.
So now I’m on to my next project. Or two.
So that long silences or the form-letter rejections don’t shake my confidence as a writer, I started a novel earlier this year. I won’t tell you its working title or even what its about. Just like I never told friends and relatives the names of my babies until they were born. Yes, even science-minded people can still be superstitious. 🙂
And even though I’ve been trying to get away from science-writing, as I am so much more compassionate about creative writing, after my Facebook Group hit 7500 members, I realized there was a need out there for a practical discussion on how to heal naturally from endometriosis and adenomyosis. So I have an outline started for a Handbook. I don’t expect to achieve fame and fortune from it, but for the same reason I started the Facebook Group, I feel it would be selfish of me not to share all that I’ve learned about endometriosis. I just can’t stand the thought of any woman being pushed into hysterectomy, unnecessarily.
So, see I’ve been busy. But I’ve just kept it all to myself. I hope I won’t have to be secretive for much longer.
What would you like to see in my next writer’s blog post?