Sometimes when life is at its most hectic there are moments of sudden humor. These moments give us a chance to catch our breaths, ease tension, and restore balance. Such a moment occurred this morning.
From the kitchen window I spotted an argument between a magpie and a dove. Just as their disagreement was heating up and turning physical, a robin zeroed in on the pair like a flying missile. Both the magpie and the dove lost no time deciding there was someplace else they needed to be.
Early in my writing career, both a teacher and a published author gave me the same advice. They said when one scene after another is filled with suspense and tension, the grand finale will have a bigger impact if there is a tension breaker that allows the reader to laugh or at least be mildly distracted before hitting him/her with the big super crisis.
I woke up this morning feeling like I've reached that brief change-of-direction moment in my writer life. I have a full length novel, recently submitted to my publisher, and I just finished a novella and sent it to beta readers. While I wait to hear if the novel is accepted and wait for my beta readers to return my novella for whatever repairs it needs, I'm at that change of pace moment.
Once I would have immediately started another story, but with two manuscripts in the works I think I need a break. I promised myself that when I reached this point I'd clean my carpets. Last week's mud storm has left me with windows in need of a good washing. My garden needs some serious work and I have a Relief Society lesson to prepare. Today I don't want to do any of those things.
I feel a bit like my granddaughter after her brother's soccer game a few days ago. When the game ended she gathered up her little folding chair and her blanket and started to walk with my husband and me instead of her mother. We were parked at opposite sides of the soccer field.
"Where are you going?" her mother asked her.
"To Papa's house."
"You need to go home and have dinner."
"Grandma has popsicles." She stepped closer to me.
Ah! That's what I need, something different and fun before plunging into edits and rewrites.